Understatement of the year contender: it’s been a hot summer in London. This current heatwave, which could see temperatures of 36°C in the capital, isn’t even the hottest of the year, with the UK’s record temperature recorded earlier in the summer.
In fact, London endured its driest July since 1935, and continuing spells without enough rain has led to an official drought being declared in the city today.
This is expected to mean the introduction of water rationing measures which could potentially include a hosepipe ban, after the National Drought Group met to discuss the impact of the dry weather in Britain. It could also mean a ban on sprinklers in some areas.
London is one of a number of areas in England named by the Environment Agency that have been declared under this status, which include: Kent and South London, Hertfordshire and North London, East Anglia, Thames, Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire, the East Midlands, Devon and Cornwall and Solent and South Downs. Yorkshire and West Midlands are also expected to be named under this status later in August.
Is there a hosepipe ban in London?
Speaking to BBC Breakfast, Thames Water’s Strategy and Regularity Affairs director Cathryn Ross, said: “We have to wait and see what the Government says and exactly what that means, possibly even later today. I don’t know, we will obviously consider that.
“But, as you probably noticed, at Thames Water we’ve been asking our customers since late May to respond to the hot weather, to respond to the dry weather and just really take steps to use water wisely.”
Should a hosepipe ban be introduced, those caught breaching rules by watering gardens in this way or filling paddling pools will face £1,000 fines.
The last time anywhere in England experienced a hosepipe ban was ten years ago, when it was implemented by seven water companies in 2012.
Read about help with preparing for water restrictions on the Thames Water website.