Plea to Salisbury customers to help ensure water demand is met

Plea to Salisbury customers to help ensure water demand is met

Published by Henrietta Creasey at 9:37am 23rd June 2020. (Updated at 10:03am 23rd June 2020)

3 minute read

Wessex Water say May saw a huge demand for water and with the hot spell returning simple steps are needed to help.

Salisbury's main water provider saw an "unprecedented demand" for water last month due to more people being at home and using extra water in the garden.

Demand peaked during the driest May on record in England when people watered their gardens more frequently, with sprinklers on lawns a major contributor to the surge in demand.

Wessex Water also said that hot tubs, which have increased in sales by 1,000% during lockdown, were another factor in the huge May water usage figures. 

hot tub
Sales of hot tubs have soared!

Such was the demand during the final week in May that the company's operational staff had to work extended hours around the clock to manage the water network, ensuring customers continued to have a reliable supply.

Ashlea Lane, director of water production, said:

"We weren't running out of water, but getting it through our pipes quickly enough was challenging when demand was at its highest.

"May was exceptionally dry and warm. During peak times we were putting an extra 85 million litres of water into the network just to keep up with demand. We noticed that water was being used at unusual times of the day, typically peaking between 6pm and 10pm as people made the most of lighter evenings outside."

"And there's no doubt that the Covid-19 lockdown had an effect too, with more people being at home and spending a greater amount of time in their gardens."  


Wessex Water covers most of Wiltshire and parts of Hampshire.

The company says while there is no water shortage or plans for a hosepipe ban there simple steps customers can take in the home and garden to ensure demand is met across the region and more water is left in the environment.

No plans for a hosepipe ban.

You can do your bit by:

  • Not watering lawns - grass will spring back again when it rains. 
  • Re-using paddling pool and washing up water on gardens. 
  • Watering plants in the morning, not the evening, using a watering can. 

Ashlea said sensible steps would really help the company

"We certainly don't want to stop people having fun or enjoying their gardens, but filling the paddling pool with a couple of inches less water or simply using a water can on your plants makes a big difference."    

paddling pool Hen
There's a plea not to fill the paddling pool so full!

Like all water companies, Wessex Water has long-term plans in place to make sure there is enough water for homes and businesses and local rivers and wildlife are protected.

Leakage has halved on its network since the mid-1990s and the company has invested £230 million in a water supply grid, enabling water to be moved around the region to where it's needed most. 


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