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16 April 2012, 11:16
Half of the UK is now officially suffering a water shortage after more areas joined places like Northamptonshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire in drought.
Seventeen more counties were added to the list of drought-hit areas on Monday 16 April 2012 - all of them in the Midlands and the South West of England. Droughts have already been declared in the East and South East of England.
The newly affected drought-hit counties are Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Bristol, South Gloucestershire, parts of Hampshire and most of Wiltshire, Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Staffordshire, West Midlands, Warwickshire, Shropshire, Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire.
The Environment Agency say the drought conditions could continue until Christmas 2012 or longer. Hosepipe bans were brought in by seven water companies across the East and South East on Thursday 5 April 2012, to try and conserve supplies.