A leaked document shows that half of the UK’s population faces a ban on hosepipes. This comes as heatwave continues and the temperatures are expected to reach 36C this Saturday.

  • Thames Water, who supplies 15 million people with water, is preparing to ban hosepipes in an effort to reduce their supply
  • Others, such as Yorkshire and Severn Trent, are also considering their ban.
  • These bans will result in hosepipe restrictions affecting 33 million people throughout the UK. 
  • Met Office issues an amber warning with high temperatures and severe weather forecasts for the remainder of this week


Nearly half the UK’s population will face bans on hosepipes in just weeks, after leaked documents revealed that three additional water companies have plans to restrict their use.

Yesterday Britain’s biggest water company, Thames Water, which supplies some 15million people, said it would announce a ban in the coming weeks.

Southern Water, South East Water und Welsh Water already announced restrictions that will affect almost three million people.

A document from the Environment Agency that was seen by Daily Mail shows that Yorkshire has five million customers. Severn Trent is home to eight million. South West can have up to two millions. The number of people who would be affected by a hosepipe ban will increase to approximately 33million if the law is enacted.

Planned hosepipe bans could see the water supplies of some 33 million people affected as water companies struggle to cope with demand

As water companies try to meet demand, planned hosepipe bans may see water supply disruptions for 33 million people.

A cow on Minchinhampton Common, Gloucestershire struggles to find shelter from the hot conditions

Minchinhampton Common, Gloucestershire: A cow struggling to shelter herself from the scorching heat 

Some 33 million people face having their water supplies affected as companies struggle to cope with the demand caused by the extremely warm summer

As companies try to deal with high demand, water supply problems for 33 million households could be a problem.

The Met Office has issued an amber severe heat alert for areas of England and Wales, for tomorrow through Sunday. Temperatures are likely to rise up to 35C (95F), or 36C (36) on Monday. UK Health and Security Agency placed the UK on a Level 3 heat-health alert.

A 14-year old boy who got into trouble in Cheshunt’s lake, Hertfordshire was killed by the heat.

Drought conditions may last for three months, according to dire warnings. The UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology predicts ‘exceptionally low’ flow levels in rivers until October.

Thames Water is available in parts of London and Surrey. The ban on hosepipes comes in spite of the fact that 635 million litres per day are let out by its pipes.

The Long Walk at Windsor Castle on Monday as temperatures soared again amid safety warnings as another heatwave is due to hit the UK

As temperatures soar again amid warnings that another heatwave could hit, Monday’s Long Walk at Windsor Castle saw the temperature rise.

In this aerial photograph, a man walks along a sun-bleached pathway in Richmond Park on August 09

A man is seen walking in Richmond Park’s sun-bleached pathways on this aerial shot taken August 9, 2009.

People sit in the sun, surrounded by parched grass during a period of hot and dry weather, in London, on August 9

On August 9, London, people sat in the sunlight, with parched grass, during hot, dry weather.

The scene at Hornsey Road in Islington, north London where firefighters were dealing with a burst water main that caused flooding of about 4 feet as Thames Water urged customers to save water

This is the scene in Hornsey Road (Islington), north London, where firefighters dealt with flooding caused by a burst watermain. Thames Water advised customers to keep their water safe.

The Burrator Reservoir in Devon, which as of August 6 (pictured) was 44 per cent full. It comes amid fears of a drought in England

Burrator Reservoir was in Devon and at 44% capacity as of August 6. This is amid concerns of drought in England.

A bridge crosses the dried bed of the River Thames near the river's source at Thames Head, a group of springs that arise from the limestone aquifers of the Cotswolds, on August 8

On August 8, a bridge spans the dry bed of River Thames, near its source at Thames Head. This is a grouping of springs which are derived from limestone aquifers in the Cotswolds.

The Environment Agency will declare England in drought this week, further pressure on water companies.

The bans make it an offence to use a hosepipe to water a garden, wash a car or boat or fill up ponds, and can attract a £1,000 fine in the courts.

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: ‘On the Environment Agency’s sliding scale, we are now one stage before a drought. If this dry weather picture continues, parts of England could move into drought.’

As much as any other part of south Britain, the stunning and dry Greenwich Park has been without rain since June/early July.

Q&A: Where are hosepipe bans and what could happen if I break one? 

What have you done to ban hosepipes?

  • Manx WaterIsle of Man: From Friday, last Friday
  • Southern WaterHampshire and Isle of Wight: From yesterday
  • South East WaterKent and Sussex: Starting next Friday
  • Welsh WaterPembrokeshire and a small portion of Carmarthenshire available from August 19
  • Thames Water  Greater London and areas of north Wiltshire in the upcoming weeks.

Which rules apply?

After the ban has been in effect, you won’t be allowed to use any hosepipes or sprinklers to water your yard, car, or ornamental pond. It is not allowed to pressure wash a patio. However, watering cans are allowed.

Who can be exempted?

Those with disabilities – who have a blue badge – are exempt for watering their garden. Also exempt are people who water an area in preparation for a national and international sporting event.

For those who are watering turf newly laid or plants newly bought, exemptions might be available.

The ban does not apply to professional window cleaners or commercial car washes.

What happens if I violate the ban?

You could be prosecuted and subject to a fine of up to £1,000 in the courts if found guilty.