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Hosepipe ban across Britain will last into next year

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There seems little hope of the bans currently imposed by seven of the 11 UK firms being lifted for several months, it was said.

Under the current restrictions, customers are banned from using a hosepipe to water their gardens, clean vehicles, fill swimming pools or clean their homes.

They can still carry out those activities with tap water from a bucket or watering can, or using water that is not sourced from taps.

Thames Water has already confirmed its hosepipe ban, covering 10 million customers in London and southern England, will remain in place for the foreseeable future, stating “a lot more rain” was needed for water levels to return to normal. 

Yesterday, Yorkshire Water director Neil Dewis said that while there has been “a slight reduction in demand” over recent weeks, the average levels across his region’s reservoirs have plunged to 35 percent.

He revealed one West Yorkshire reservoir is currently 80 per cent empty, while Ardingly Reservoir, in West Sussex, is said to be at 30 percent of normal capacity. Mr Dewis said: “I think the hosepipe ban will remain in place for several more months and, if it is a dry winter, will be there well into next year.” 

The firm’s first ban in 27 years came into effect from August 26. It blamed hot, dry weather and “the lowest rainfall since our records began more than 130 years ago”. 

Mr Dewis explained: “The bottom line is we will have some rain this winter and reservoirs will recover. But even if we get a normal amount of winter rainfall, that will only lift reservoirs to 70 per cent by spring.”

“And if we have another dry, hot summer we could face some serious ­consequences.”

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