Farming

Hosepipe ban to manage East Anglian drought

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EXCLUSIVE
By Ivor Traktor, Farming Correspondent (intern)

A hosepipe ban is being introduced in East Anglia as the region suffers from months of severe drought, the Suffolk Gazette can reveal.

Lack of rainfall and heatwaves have left farmers fearing for crops, gardeners have been desperately watering their parched flowers and beds, while lawns have turned a sickly brown.

Now, as reservoir levels hit a record low, Anglian Water is having to take emergency measures and introduce a hosepipe ban from next week.

Met Office experts say Suffolk had not recorded any rainfall since a brief shower in February, and no more rain is forecast until late August at the earliest.

An insider said: “It is quite unusual to have so little rain. East Anglia has been caught in high-atmosphere jet stream shift, which has swept warm air up from Africa, and it shows no sign of changing any time soon. Who would have thought everyone would be so fed up with the sun?”

hosepipe ban westerfieldParched: This farmland at Westerfield, near Ipswich, desperately needs rain to save crops

Anglian Water bosses met this week to discuss the ongoing drought, and will announce the hosepipe ban on Monday morning.

A source told the Suffolk Gazette: “Reservoirs have hit record lows and we have to preserve what we have left. Hosepipe bans will be in place, and farms without special licenses will be prevented from irrigating crops.

“The weather has simply been too pleasant. But while lack of rain is nice for a while, it can be a killer unless we manage it properly.”

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