Hundreds left without water after mains burst in Polegate

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Hundreds of people were left without water on Thursday (July 25) after two water mains burst in the Polegate area.

Residents in the Polegate and Berwick area were affected for several hours after the main burst in the early hours of the morning.

Supplier South East Water said the hot weather could be putting the pipes under pressure, which caused them to burst.

The situation meant Drusillas Parkin Alfriston had to close for two hours on the first morning of the school summer holidays.

Laurence Smith, Managing Director at the park, said: “At 9:45am we had a visit from South East Water telling us that there was a burst pipe in the immediate vicinity and as a result the water to Drusillas would have to be turned off whilst the repair took place.

“Without water none of our toilets work and it would have been totally impractical and against health and safety guidelines to open up to the public. At 9:55am we made the decision that we couldn’t open the park and we started to inform customers.”

The park said that tickets purchased online or in advance could be used on another day or refunded. Mr Smith continued: “At just after 12 noon water did indeed start flowing again and after checking some of the toilets and sinks we re-opened our gates at 12:10pm. At this stage we made the decision that we would allow entry in the afternoon at half the normal gate entry price for all those people who had made the decision to wait. We did our very best, in difficult circumstances to act quickly and efficiently and we can only apologise to those of you who had a wasted trip. But we hope very much that you will return on another day in the not too distant future.”

Simon Robertson, Head of Distribution at South East Water, said: “We immediately began our investigations and discovered bursts on two nine inch water mains. The bursts caused around 1,000 properties to experience no water or low water pressure. We were able to isolate both bursts and carry out repairs quickly. Customers began seeing their supplies return to normal by the early afternoon. It is always difficult to know the exact cause of water pipes bursting, however it would be fair to say that 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 all our customers for their patience and apologise for the inconvenience.”