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Water supplies under severe pressure from dry climate and growing population

A festival in Norwich is highlighting the importance of water. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Dry weather and a growing population are putting severe pressure on East Anglia's water supplies.

Anglian Water is investing nearly half a billion pounds this year to help make sure the taps don't run dry in the future.

The company says if plans are not put in place now there simply won't be enough to go around.

Click below for Natalie Gray's report

Norfolk is the driest county in the driest part of the country. Climate change means there is likely to be even less rainfall at a time when East Anglia's population is seeing the fastest increase outside London.

Regan Harris from Anglian Water said: "So in Norwich for example, we're expecting to see a million more people over the next twenty years coming to the area but with that it brings its own problems.

"With more people and fewer rain drops it means that we need to be prepared as a water company to make sure that we've got the right amount of water in the right place at the right time."

Heigham Water supplies a large area of Norwich with water. Credit: ITV News Anglia

A week-long festival in Norwich called H2 -OMG hopes to highlight the importance of water and the challenges.

At Heigham Water treatment works in the city they are installing a £36 million filtration system which means they will soon be able to extract water from the nearby River Wensum all year round.

And it is all thanks to new spaghetti-type filters.

Liam Doyle, Project Manager for Anglian Water, said: "Throughout the year and different seasons the particles in the water vary, so you might notice the River Wensum might be cloudy - we need to be able to extract throughout the year so the new filter will provide that facility.

"This site supplies a large part of Norwich and we need to maintain that supply into Norwich as it stands."

It is part of £425 million of investment in East Anglia this year.

Anglian Water supplies a billion litres of water everyday to two and a half million households and than 214,000 businesses.

The storage reservoir at Heigham holds fifty million litres of water - enough to supply Norwich with water for just one day.

East Anglia has a growing population. Credit: ITV News Anglia