Dwr Cymru Welsh Water opens Newport Glaslyn laboratory
A £10.4m testing laboratory to ensure the "best possible" drinking water has been officially opened in Newport.
Dwr Cymru Welsh Water's laboratory, which employs 50 staff, carries out biological and chemical tests on drinking water to 1.4m homes and businesses in Wales and Herefordshire.
Welsh Water is investing £1.4bn in its water and sewerage network up to 2015.
The company says it carries out about 750,000 analyses of drinking water samples every year.
Previously, the work was conducted by external companies but is now being carried out at Welsh Water's in-house Glaslyn laboratories at the former HSBC building, Tredegar Park, and at Bretton, near Broughton, Flintshire.
Laboratory manager Howard Handley said: "We have already begun developing links with local universities in order to further develop this centre of excellence.
"Our aim is to ensure that skills are developed within the local economy and that significant innovations can be achieved through these partnerships.
"We are all very excited about the opportunities that lie ahead and the value we can add to the business and the local community."
Welsh Water chief executive Chris Jones said; "The Newport facility is our main testing centre in Wales and plays a vital role in ensuring that we continue to provide the best possible water quality at the tap and protect public health - which is our highest priority."