AUTHORITIES have warned that a hosepipe ban could be enforced if weather conditions across the North West do not change.

It follows a period of hot weather which has left Bolton’s reservoirs running dry.

Wayoh, near Edgworth, usually supplies people across the town with water, but the reservoir has slowly dried and is almost completely empty.

In a statement, United Utilities said the problems came down to a lack of rainfall and “exceptionally high demand” on water resources.

A spokesman said: “The prolonged hot weather means the region’s reservoir stores have decreased since last week, with some reservoirs looking more dramatic than others.

“The reducing reservoir levels are not surprising given the ongoing lack of rainfall and exceptionally high demand.

“We are managing resources carefully, and our integrated network, which we have invested heavily in, does gives us the flexibility to move water around the region, to reduce demand on those sources which are lower.

“We are still encouraging our customers to voluntarily use water efficiently, by avoiding the use of water hungry devices, particularly outside in the garden.

“However, if demand does not reduce in the next few days we’ll have no choice but to introduce enforced restrictions.”

A ban would stop people watering their gardens as well as cleaning cars, and filling garden ponds and paddling pools in order to prevent waste.

Water UK, which manages supplies across the country, has asked people to use water carefully.

A spokesman said: “Thanks to above average rainfall in spring this year, water levels across the UK are in a healthy position – Britain is not about to go into a drought.

“However, demand for water remains extremely high throughout the current heatwave, so water companies are continuing to ask that we use water wisely to ensure that the high level of demand does not have an impact on water pressure.”