WATER firm South West Water (SWW) has been accused of ‘going rogue’ after its boss was awarded a £300,000 pay rise.

Liberal Democrat General Election candidate Richard Foord said SWW owner Pennon Group’s top bosses were lining their pockets at taxpayers’ expense.

Mr Foord was MP for the Tiverton and Honiton constituency including Culm Valley parishes, but has switched to the new Honiton and Sidmouth seat for July 4.

He said Pennon chief executive Susan Davy’s new salary of £860,000 came just weeks after the company was embroiled in a contaminated water scandal in South Devon where thousands of people were told to boil their water because of a parasite which made many ill with diarrhoea and vomiting.

Mr Foord said: “This new bumper pay rise is a slap in the face for bill payers across the South West.

“Our communities are facing higher bills, contaminated water, and raw sewage poisoning our rivers and beaches, all while the top bosses at South West Water are lining their own pockets at our own expense.

“South West Water has officially gone rogue.

“These wayward firms are totally not fit for purpose and we need urgent action to crack down on their profiteering.

“For too long this Government has given water companies a free pass by gutting the regulators meant to hold them in check and allowing them to commit environmental vandalism on an industrial scale.”

A spokesperson for the Pennon Group said the company did not want to comment on the criticism.