Utility firm says water levels have not recovered as expected after ‘exceptional’ summer

Anglian Water wants its customers to save water after a long, dry summer. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Anglian Water wants its customers to save water after a long, dry summer. Picture: CONTRIBUTED - Credit: Archant

Despite the on-going dry weather, Anglian Water says its water supplies are secure and the company’s engineers are already working to maintain their levels across the region, in preparation for next summer.

Following one of the hottest summers on record last year, and below average rainfall so far this winter, the water company is investing an additional £6.5million to make sure it’s equipment is ready for the summer ahead, and is asking its customers to use water wisely in their own homes too.

Head of water resources for Anglian Water, Hannah Stanley-Jones said: “When it’s dull and grey outside it’s easy to not notice that in fact it hasn’t rained that much. But the reality is, during the long hot dry spell, the region only had 54 per cent of the average rainfall, and we have only had 89 per cent of the long term average since then, which is not sufficient to recover from the low levels.

“The rain in early December certainly helped to bolster our supplies and, with average reservoir levels currently at around 78 per cent, our supplies are secure. But coming after what was an exceptionally long dry summer, we haven’t seen the recovery in groundwater levels that we would normally expect for this time of year.”

In response to the dry summer in 2018, Anglian Water has put extra resources into a programme of work this winter to ensure its equipment is in tip top shape to make the most of the water available.

Ms Stanley-Jones added: “Our teams are currently undertaking a programme of work including things like cleaning our underground boreholes to ensure they can work at full capacity to get the water we need.

“The East of England is the driest region in the country and we are used to periods with little rainfall. We undertake this kind of work every winter but with rain levels below average for this time of year it is essential that extra steps are taken to ensure water provisions remain strong for the rest of the year and the warmer months ahead.”

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Anglian Water is also urging their customers to continue with their water saving measures, even during the winter.

Some water saving tips for the cold weather are: Fix dripping taps, lag pipes to prevent them bursting, take shorter showers, or shallower baths, don’t wash cars and avoid flushing the toilet regularly.