Thames Water 'ignored' Oxfordshire residents following burst water main during hosepipe ban

Credit: ITV News Meridian

Residents living in an area of Oxfordshire say they felt 'completely ignored' by Thames Water following a burst water main.

The main burst in Littlemore three weeks ago, leading to flooding of an underpass causing havoc for people living nearby.

The fault has now been fixed, but local residents say they're not happy with how the water company handled the situation, saying it caused extra noise and traffic. The subway is also still closed.

Resident Nick O'Rorke said: "It's been very difficult to sleep for anyone living on this street, particularly in these houses right next to it with up to three pump lorries sitting here pumping water at all hours of the night; mostly during the night and not so much during the day.

"Despite having made a lot of complaints to Thames Water, they completely ignored the residents here and just done whatever they wanted.

"They closed one lane of the road onto the roundabout and they haven't put proper signage up and people have just been driving up here even though it says road closed, straight onto the roundabout, which is extremely dangerous."

  • Nick O'Rorke, local resident

A hosepipe ban is currently in force for Thames Water customers with Nick adding the situation is "incredibly wasteful".

The ban applies to around 10 million customers in London, the Thames Valley, north west Kent, and south Essex.

It means domestic customers are not allowed to use hosepipes for cleaning cars, watering plants or allotments, or filling paddling or swimming pools.

However customers are allowed to use mains water from a watering can or bucket instead of a hose.

Credit: ITV News Meridian

A Thames Water spokesperson said: “We’re sorry the repair at the corner of Littlemore roundabout took longer than normal and we know it’s not acceptable to be losing so much precious water.

"This was a complex and large-scale repair on an important part of the local network, and we had to ensure our work to fix the pipe did not impact customer supplies.

"This means we had to balance our need to stop a leak while ensuring we kept customers taps running while we planned the work.

“Our engineers conducted part of the repair on August 18 which reduced the amount of water flowing from the pipe and carried out a full repair on August 24.

"In the meantime, we had been regularly pumping water out of the subway and have been cleaning the pipe now it is fixed.

“We’re sorry for any disruption this has caused for customers.”

Oxfordshire County Council says the subway needs to be cleaned and inspected in case there is any water damage.

The water has damaged the subway lighting which the council says is why it will remain closed until repairs are carried out.