Cornwall faces further water rationing this summer as county is still in drought

Cornwall's main reservoir at Colliford during the summer Credit: PA

People in Cornwall could face further water rationing measures this summer, as the county's reservoirs remain at low levels.

South West Water has not ruled out the possibility of further restrictions in the Duchy over the coming months.

It follows a hosepipe ban which was introduced on 23 August, which has not yet been lifted.

Cornwall, The Isles of Scilly and Devon still remain in drought status, the Environment Agency has said.

The main reservoir in the area is at Colliford on Bodmin Moor and the water level stood at at 48.9% at the end of February, with the level falling. 

But months later, the company has said it can still not rule out further restrictions this year, and is continuing to look at a range of measures to tackle low levels.

David Harris, South West Water's Drought and Resilience Director, said: "The South West’s water resources are under immense and increasing pressure.

"Our current system relies heavily on rainfall, and climate change has shown us that we need to be developing climate-independent sources of water in Cornwall."

The company is now looking into the possibility of desalination, which would make sea water drinkable.

“With 860 miles of coastline, desalination is a logical option to explore and forms part of an additional £45 million investment we are making this year in new water resource schemes", Mr Harris said.

"This also includes bringing new water sources online such as Hawks Tor, a redundant china clay pit purchased in 2022, which has been converted into a new reservoir inside nine months.

“We continue to take every step necessary to manage water resources carefully, fixing leaks, investing in new capacity and planning for all possible outcomes."