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Hosepipe Ban 2018 – Commentary

The UK currently finds itself basking in a heatwave and a very dry environment can be seen all around. Parkland grass is the colour of straw and flowerbeds are bone dry. A recent trip to The Lake District proved to be unusually hard under foot. So should we be expecting a hosepipe ban and water restrictions this summer?

Earlier this year water shortage issues were a real problem. Rainfall over the winters of 2016/2017 and 2017/2018 were lower than average. This has the cumulative effect of causing low water stocks in the warmer months.

Back in January 2018 the Environment Agency was still warning this could lead to a hosepipe ban this summer. Water companies such as Affinity Water confirmed these fears by stating their groundwater levels were below average and that they didn’t expect them to be topped up enough during the spring and summer months.

But March and April 2018 provided much needed above average rainfall and this turned earlier predictions on their head. Jump forward to late June 2018 and things are different, despite the current sunshine. For instance Affinity Water now say that their water stocks are “near normal” which is good for this time of year. Similar reports come from other ‘at risk’ water companies too.

Interestingly the Met Office say that the far north and north east have been notably dry this month with certain areas only having half their usual rainfall during June.

Water companies are always advising us to save water (rightly so) and now is no different. But we see no reason to believe there will be any hosepipe bans or water restrictions in the UK during 2018. A third successively dry winter could definitely cause problems in 2019 though.

For the very latest updates, have a look at our Current Situation page.

24 replies on “Hosepipe Ban 2018 – Commentary”


If I understand correctly the problem is one of network capacity, not water reserves. Most areas have sufficient water, but demand for water during the heatwave is at risk of exceeding the amount that can be carried.

But we’ll see.

We are both over seventy with arthritis and find it really difficult to carry water in cans. Is there any alternative to watering to alleviate the weight of the water other than a hosepipe please?

You should speak directly to your local water company about this. They should be able to help you in your circumstances.

In my area it rained almost every day from September 2017 to April 2018. So, why should we have this water supply warning after only ten days’ sunshine? We have been having periodic heat waves for centuries. They are nothing new and should be no surprise for any forward-thinking organisation.

At last someone who has a positive comment.
Yes using a watering can is more time consuming but, cheaper than gym membership 🙂

We are where we are. There is no point railing against the authorities – venting your spleen will help nobody (but you, maybe). I have flowerbeds all round the house, and have planted up countless containers – plus plants in pots all round the greenhouse that I am bringing on for a sale next year – and watered them routinely with a sprinkler on the hose, moving it on every few minutes. So I was Dreading the hose pipe ban. But today I watered them all with a watering can. Even (especially) the sweetpeas got a good drenching. To my great surprise it took (a bit more effort but) less time, and WAY less water, than usual. #Icandothis!

We direct rainwater off our buildings and roads, into drains and out to sea, while pumping water from reservoirs into our buildings, before directing this water also into drains and ultimately out to sea. And then we have a hosepipe ban and run out of lettuce. Bonkers.

Turkey gets lots of rain in the mountains and they collect it in huge dams. Some area get major flooding in the winter. It’s not as dry as you would think.

We have a house there. I know from experience.

In turkey they water the gardens all day long and get very little rain as they do in Tenerife so why do we get hose pipe bans when we get so much rain it doesn’t make sense, We need to get these water board people ie United utilities to get their act together because we pay enough in water bills

Why am I paying an extortionate water bill? Lived in Spain for years swimming pool jet wash never ran out of water……. time these companies repaired the leaks- makes me laugh brexit to make Britain great again – when was that then the Victorian era?? The infrastructure in this country is closer to third world than first and I think it may be difficult to blame that on immigration – bet the water company bosses are on great bonuses though. We had a leak in the road the other day- it took two days for the water company to fix it- I mean the road was closed for two days water everywhere the workmen were here for four hours. Great work water companies – just wish I could run my business like that 😀

Agreed, get on with Brexit to make Britain great again.

Unlimited EU immigration has pushed our infrastructure to breaking point. Less demand = less pressure on infrastructure = improved services.

Extremely hot weather. On the news requesting to cut usage (4 min showers etc)
At my local McDonalds a Contractor is jet washing the car park for hours! Where is the joined up thinking?

Not very socially responsible of McDonalds in my opinion

It makes me so angry we get a bit of sun and a few dry days for a change and it’s panic stations,don’t worry folks the cold and the damp weather will be back it’s Britain not Benidorm

England and Wales lost 3.1 billion litres of water every day from leakage, according to the Consumer Council for Water (CCW). According to the company’s annual report, Thames Water is the worst offender as it loses around 179 litres of water per property each day.6 Dec 2017

This is an issue that needs attention before blaming the weather on lack of water.

Rainfall of 2017/18 lower than avrage??? Absolute nonsense! Between September and March we never had three consecutive dry days. It was the wettest Autumn/Winter that I can remember. A number of Groundsmen, Greenkeepers and Contractors will point that out to you!

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