Redbridge split in two as lucky few escape hosepipe ban

Redbridge has been split in two by the water shortage, with a chunk of the borough suffering a hosepipe ban while the rest is unaffected.

Essex & Suffolk Water, which supplies the south east of Redbridge, has not yet imposed a hosepipe ban, unlike Thames Water which covers the rest of the borough.

Thames has said that after an exceptionally dry two years, with below-average rainfall for 20 of the past 25 months, Redbridge – along with much of the south east – is in drought.

Residents in the area covered by Essex & Suffolk which broadly lies east of the Cranbrook Road and south of the Eastern Avenue (A12), are still permitted to use hosepipes despite the drought.

Ron Jeffries, who lives in Spearpoint Gardens, Aldborough Hatch, said: “Our hosepipe is essential for us to water our garden and if the ban was brought in, it would mean we would have to make some significant changes.

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“I am 79 and would struggle greatly if I had to carry watering cans back and forth. I would have to get my grandsons involved.”

Mr Jeffries, who volunteers at St Peter’s Church, Aldborough Hatch, added: “My wife and I help take care of the plants for the church’s flower show in June where a hosepipe is badly needed. If we couldn’t use one, it would cause great difficulty. However, we will try and save as much water as possible using butts.”

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Alan Howe, secretary of environmental group Barkingside 21, who lives in Chalgrove Crescent, Clayhall, has not been able to use a hosepipe since their use was prohibited on April 5.

He said: “The ban could cause significant problems as the summer approaches, especially for older people. Luckily I have been using two great big water butts, so the ban won’t affect me too much.

“I also collect rainwater through a home-made contraption which also helps me to save water.

“But it is more likely that there will be a lot of rain, which has particularly helped my garden over the weekend.”

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