Due to unprecedented weather conditions Thames Water have announced a hosepipe ban starting tomorrow, August 24.

The water company stated that domestic customers should not use hosepipes for cleaning cars, watering gardens or allotments, filling paddling pools and swimming pools and cleaning windows.

It added that the recent heatwave and extreme temperatures have resulted in the highest demand for over 25 years with the company supplying 2.9 billion litres of water a day to customers across the London and Thames Valley region.

The company said in some areas during the hot weather, demand for water rose by 50 per cent compared to the norm for the time of year.

With no prospect of significant rain forecast by the Met Office, Thames Water has taken a number of measures to boost its water resources.

Including work to reduce leaks and implement a media campaign to encourage customers to use less water.

However, the rapid escalation of the situation means the water company must now implement stage two of its drought plan which includes hosepipe restrictions.

Read more: All the Oxfordshire road closures you need to know about this week

Groundwater levels are currently below normal throughout the region and declining towards levels that would only be expected once a decade.

Reservoir storage levels in London and Farmoor, in Oxfordshire, have reduced significantly and are now at levels not seen for around 30 years.

Thames Water CEO Sarah Bentley said: “Implementing a temporary use ban for our customers has been a very difficult decision to make and one which we have not taken lightly.

“After months of below average rainfall and the recent extreme temperatures in July and August, water resources in our region are depleted.

“Despite investing in the largest leakage reduction programme in the UK, customer demand is at unprecedented levels, and we now have to move into the next phase of our drought plan to conserve water, mitigate further risk and futureproof supplies.

“I’d like to thank all of our customers for the efforts they have already made to conserve water as a result of the media campaign we have been running since May.

“Reducing demand means reducing the amount of water we have to take from the environment at a time when it is under pressure.

“I would also like to apologise to our customers who have been affected by recent incidents, our dedicated colleagues are working around the clock to manage this challenging situation.”

Mrs Bentley, who joined the company at the end of 2020, launched an 8-year turnaround plan in May 2021 to begin reversing years of under-performance.

The plan has three pillars, fix the basics, raise the bar and shape the future.


Read more from this author

This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1

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