The Environment Agency yesterday warned that the drought affecting parts of England could last beyond Christmas, as it revealed that 17 counties in the South West and Midlands had joined the South East, East Anglia and parts of Yorkshire as suffering from drought.
The new counties affected are Bristol, Cornwall, Devon, Derbyshire, Dorset, Gloucestershire, parts of Hampshire, Herefordshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, Somerset, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, the West Midlands, Wiltshire and Worcestershire
However, the announcement by the environmental regulator does not bring any new restrictions from local water companies at this stage. There remain seven water companies in the South and East of England that have introduced temporary use restrictions.
The Agency urged people and businesses to “use water wisely” in an attempt to stave off further restrictions.