SOUTH West Water is confident there will be no need for hosepipe bans in either Devon or Cornwall this year, even if we see prolonged periods of hot and dry weather.

A hosepipe ban was put in place in Cornwall and parts of North Devon in 2022 after the biggest drought in the region for over 130 years.

This was extended to other parts of Devon in 2023.

Since then a combination of record-level investment, periods of heavy rainfall and customers doing more to save water, has seen a boost in reservoir levels across the South West.

South West Water announced last week that its two biggest strategic reservoirs, Roadford Reservoir in Devon and Colliford Reservoir in Cornwall, have both successfully recharged to over 90% storage capacity.

South West Water is investing over £125-million to increase resources in Devon by 30% and in Cornwall by 45% to help maintain strong water resilience for now and the future.

All of the plans for Devon have now been completed and are in use, with 70% completed in Cornwall as the business works towards delivering desalination in Par and a new water treatment works in Porth.

Roadford Reservoir is now at 100% storage compared with 68% this time last year, while Colliford Reservoir is at 98.5% compared to 60% last year.

David Harris, South West Water’s drought and resilience director, said: “While it may seem obvious that recent heavy rainfall has led to increased reservoir levels across the region, over one-third of the additional storage has come from our own supply interventions and customers reducing their own usage.

“As a direct result of our investments, interventions, the weather and our customers reducing their use of water, we are confident that we are in a strong position to navigate whatever weather we face this year without the need for water restrictions.

“This does not mean we will stop our efforts there, we will continue to invest and deliver clean water supplies across our region and prepare as much as we can for climate change and unpredictable weather patterns.”

South West Water’s Water Resources Management Plan is looking 25 years ahead to make sure there is secure, sufficient and safe supply of water for everyone, while guaranteeing the environment and the wildlife that live here are not just protected but can thrive.

South West Water has completed construction work at Blackpool Pit, bringing its total of repurposed quarries to four as part of its £125-million investment.

Blackpool Pit, along with Stannon, Park and Hawks Tor, will have all been used this year to support an improvement in water resources in Cornwall.

In Devon the business’ winter pump storage work at Gatherley is also now operational whilst the Lyd pumping scheme delivered last year.