The Environment Agency is today warning the drought in East Anglia could last until Christmas or beyond.
The past 12 months have been the driest on record for the east. Despite recent heavy rain, officials at the agency say a longer term drought stretching into 2013 is now looking more likely. Plans are already being put in place to deal with the prospect of a third dry winter.
Environment Agency officials stress that public water supplies are unlikely to be affected by the ongoing drought, but are reiterating calls from consumers to combat the dry conditions by using scarce water wisely.
Warning of the prospect of the current drought stretching into 2013, Trevor Bishop, head of water resources at the Environment Agency, said:
As of today the country's "drought map" has now been extended into the Midlands and the South West.