Downpours put an end to hosepipe bans

Deluge upon deluge has at last prompted the final four water companies in England with hosepipe bans to lift them, which has been welcomed by the HTA.

The remaining hosepipe bans have been lifted - image: Morguefile
The remaining hosepipe bans have been lifted - image: Morguefile

South East Water, Sutton and East Surrey Water, Veolia Water Central and Veolia Water Southeast banned use of hosepipes in April, which hit landscapers, turfers and maintenance crews desperate to irrigate plants.

The remaining companies had expected the bans to remain throughout the summer even though Anglian Water, Southern Water and Thames Water lifted their bans in June.

Recent downpours have led to flood warnings across parts of England.

HTA policy manager Gary Scroby said:

"We are obviously pleased there are now no hosepipe bans in place in the UK and would encourage gardeners to use the remaining summer months to plant up their garden."

The HTA had helped secure an exemption for drip irrigation which helped to mitigate damage to the industry, he said. It was now working with other stakeholders to show evidence the exemptions did save water and should become a permanent exemption.

South East Water asset director Paul Seeley said recharging of underground resources at this time of year was "most unusual" but repeated storms since April had toppe dup reserves and finally brought to an end the drought after two dry winters.

Sutton and East Surrey Water meanwhile twinned its end to the ban by announcing that a waterlogged June set a record for the wettest ever three months in the region. Some 147mm of rain fell in June, more than twice the long-term average of 50mm.

"April to June was the wettest three months ever recorded for that time of year in Sutton and East Surrey Water’s supply area," said a spokeswoman. "Rainfall totalled 318mm. Our Bough Beech reservoir is 89 per cent full."

Last week Prince Charles and environment secretary Caroline Spelman visited people in worst-affected flood areas including Hebden Bridge is west Yorkshire and Ottery St Mary in Devon.

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