Burst water pipe closes Drusillas and affects homes in Polegate

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Hundreds of homes in Berwick and Polegate found themselves without water this morning because of two burst water mains.

Workmen from South-East Water carried out repairs throughout the morning and supplies were fully restored by midday.

The burst water pipe had an impact on the Drusillas Zoo at Alfriston which was forced to close this morning. The zoo reported that it had no water supply to its toilets. However, Drusillas announced it re-opened this afternoon and is offering half price admission.

Homes in East Hoathly, Laughton and Ripe were also affected by the burst water main - some homes had no water at all, or low pressure to their supplies.

South-East Water have said there were two separate burst to nine inch water mains which they were fixing.

Simon Robertson, Head of Distribution, said: “We were aware of two separate bursts on nine inch water mains in the area which we have been working hard this morning to fix.

“We were able to isolate one of the bursts at approximately 4am in order to start emergency repairs and we were working hard on the other burst nearby.”

The cause is unknown, but a spokeswoman for the company said that the hot weather could have had an impact, with the hot weather putting additional pressure on the underground network of water pipes.

She said: “The two bursts that occurred on nine inch water mains in the Berwick and Polegate area this morning have now been fixed and water is now beginning to return to customers taps but will take time to reach all those affected.

“We anticipate that supplies will be restored by mid-afternoon.

“In the meantime, customers may still experience low pressure or no water but we would like to reassure everyone that the water should be back on this afternoon.

“The hot weather has been putting additional pressure on our network of underground pipes. This, combined with ground movement, again linked to the high temperatures, may have contributed to the burst.

“We would like to thank our customers for their patience and apologise for any inconvenience these bursts have caused.”