Water companies warn parts of UK could see drought this summer after the driest winter in more than 20 years

Lack of rain over the autumn, winter and early spring has left some rivers and reservoirs,particularly in the south and west, with dwindling levels.
Until now water companies have played down talk of hosepipe bans, but as the dry weather continues the public has now been warned that restrictions could be on the way in some areas unless reservoir levels are replenished by prolonged rainfall.
Water supplier Affinity, which covers large areas of the south-east of England, says it is "monitoring the situation closely with clear plans in place".
"January to March saw rainfall 50 to 70 per cent below average in our region" the company said.
"We have not seen the rise in groundwater levels we expected, and some rivers have seen flows decrease."
A spokesman for Southern Water said: "The winter of 2016-2017 was drier than average, particularly in the months leading up to Christmas.
Water companies say work has started with farmers to reduce the impact of the continuing dry weather as summer approaches.
Environment Agency spokesman George Leigh said some rivers, ground waters and reservoirs are lower than normal for the time of year.
But South East Water’s head of water resources Lee Dance said that while the winter has been drier than usual, the company does not envisage water shortages this summer.
"A continued lack of rainfall could lead to water restrictions."

Learn More