Water fluoridation

Water naturally contains a small amount of fluoride. 

In 1971, Bedfordshire County Council introduced a water fluoridation scheme, which had already been adopted in other areas of the UK, as a method of reducing tooth decay.

In a water fluoridation scheme, if the level of naturally occurring fluoride is below a certain threshold (one part per million or 1mg fluoride per litre of water 1mg/l - reference - Improving oral health: a community water fluoridation toolkit for local authorities, Public Health England.) fluoride can be artificially added to increase the concentration up to one part per million. 

This is known as artificial water fluoridation.

Water fluoridation in Bedfordshire

The responsibility for water fluoridation scheme lies with local authorities and is reviewed on a case by case basis. When all of the water treatment plants are dosing with fluoride, about 20% of residents have fluoridated water.

This map of Bedfordshire (PDF 1.4MB) shows the parish, district council and Public Water Supply Zone (PWSZ) boundaries across the county correct as of January 2023.

Here is a summary of the water supply:

  • the area supplied by Manton Lane Reservoir (shaded blue/green) is not currently artificially fluoridated
  • the area supplied by Pulloxhill PWSZ (stripy green) is also not currently artificially fluoridated
  • the area supplied by Newspring, Dunton, Meppershall and Potton PWSZ (light green) is currently artificially fluoridated
  • the areas not shaded in Central Bedfordshire are not artificially fluoridated

Contact for more information

If you would like further information about water fluoridation please contact Celia Shohet on 0300 300 4578.