East: Hosepipe Ban One Week On

Cambridgshire water firm Anglian Water says a week after the introduction of the hosepipe ban, it's happy with how it's being observed so far.

But the company say the heavy rain over the Easter bank holiday weekend has done very little to replenish water supplies across the drought-striken east of England.

John Clare from Anglian Water told Heart: "We haven't had anyone report their neighbours for using a hosepipe when they shouldn't but it's early days, and we had a bit of rain over the bank holiday too. 

But we are a water company not a police force, and we must concentrate our efforts in reducing the amount of water that's being wasted and providing water to our customers in future".

Mr Clare also said because we've had two exceptionally dry years the company "cannot predict when the ban will be lifted".

Yesterday (Wednesday), the company said it had entered talks to see if could transfer supplies from Severn Trent water. 

However John Clare said these were only talks, and no firm agreement had been reached to supply some populations in the South Lincolnshire area with bore-hole water which would otherwise serve the West Midlands with emergency water should the drought conditions spread into central England.

For Cambridgeshire and the East of England now though, the company's reminding people that a single hosepipe can use up to 1,000 litres of water in just one hour, which is more than the average household uses in an entire day.

The last 18 months have been the driest in over 100 years, so rivers reservoirs and groundwater levels are at very low levels - and as we move into the even drier spring/summer months, there is no sign of the situation easing.

What we cannot currently do in Cambridgeshire:

* Watering a garden with a hosepipe - including lawns, parks, public gardens and allotments.  

* Using a hosepipe for domestic recreation.  

* Non-commercial cleaning of domestic windows, walls, paths or patios with a hosepipe or jet wash.   

* Watering domestic plants with a hosepipe. 

* Washing private cars or boats with a hosepipe.

* Filling or maintaining an ornamental pond or fountain (exemptions if pond contains fish).

* Filling or maintaining domestic swimming pools and paddling pools. 

* Watering grass used for sport and recreation (expect for field of play for national and international sporting events only). 

* Filling or topping up a domestic pond, not containing fish, using a hosepipe.

Exemptions:

* If you have a Blue Badge

* If you use drip irrigation systems

* Sports, play areas and swimming pools

* Business use

* Health and use in the preventing the spread of disease.

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