Thames Water has been fined nearly 900 times in the past five years by Croydon Council for delays to repairs, leading to traffic jams in the borough.

The 890 fines issued to the company between April 2018 and May 2023 totalled £936,175, an average of 15 a month.

The data was put together by the Green Party and the results so far put Croydon as the worst-affected borough in London.

Councils are able to hand out fines to utility companies for “unreasonably prolonged or missed managed works”.

Croydon Green Party Councillor, Esther Sutton said: “We’ve all heard about the privatised water companies dumping sewage in our rivers and oceans. But even in land-locked Croydon, they are still making our lives miserable.

“Traffic jams in Croydon are bad enough normally but they are being made even worse by roadworks constantly springing up all over the town – often in the same place over and over again.

“These figures also show that issuing fines isn’t making any difference. We know private water companies will just pass the cost of these fines onto us in our bills.”

She added that the party is calling for Thames Water to be run as a “public service” rather than a private company.

A Thames Water spokesperson said: “We’d like to reassure customers in Croydon that we will always work as quickly and safely as possible to minimise disruption from our roadworks to their everyday lives.

“We’d also like to apologise to local residents and businesses who have been impacted by leaks or blockages over recent years.

“As part of our collaborative schemes, we have worked with Croydon Council to try and minimise disruption. In the summer of 2019, we launched this collaboration and saved 85 days of disturbance and we will continue to work with the council to reduce the impact of roadworks on residents.”

The company said it has 200 repair teams working across the region and 280 people working around the clock to detect leaks not yet showing above ground. It added it will spend £200million over the next three years replacing water mains.