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Last Updated: Monday, 2 October 2006, 10:04 GMT 11:04 UK
Water company lifts hosepipe ban
The hosepipe and sprinkler ban is lifted with immediate effect
A water company in Kent has lifted its ban on hosepipes and sprinklers because its supplies are almost back to normal.

Folkestone and Dover Water introduced its ban on 2 April, after water reserves had fallen to low levels.

But it said rainfall in the area over the last six months had been close to the average expected, and consumer demand had fallen 4% over the summer.

It said if the autumn and winter were as wet as forecast, then it should be able to avoid restrictions next year.

Managing director David Walton said the company wanted to ensure any inconvenience to customers was kept to a minimum.

Water meters

"The water position in our area is now better than it was at this time last year and we are now well placed to benefit from the autumn, winter and spring rains," he said.

"If the water levels in our sources remain near the long term average we should be able to avoid any restrictions next year."

However, the company is continuing to stress the need for water efficiency and water conservation, and said in the long term it still intended to use the Water Scarcity Status allocated to its area.

This allows the introduction of compulsory metering.

Under review

Mr Walton said currently about 50% of its customers had meters, with the figure set to grow to 90% by 2015.

Other water companies in south-east England last week said they were keeping their own restrictions under review.

The Consumer Council for Water welcomed Folkestone and Dover Water's decision to lift its hosepipe ban.

Richard Sturt, chairman of its southern branch, said: "Consumers have done well in abiding by the hosepipe ban, saving millions of litres of water in the area over the summer.

"Thanks to their efforts, recent rainfall and the development of two new water sources, restrictions are no longer needed in Folkestone and Dover."

See how consumers cut their water use

Downpours fail to ease hose bans
29 Sep 06 |  Southern Counties
Three more hosepipe bans come in
02 Apr 06 |  England

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