Families calling for water mains action

PUBLISHED: 15:13 03 May 2006 | UPDATED: 09:13 24 May 2010

DISGRUNTLED families in Barrow Gurney, who have been unable to use their showers for nine months for fear of catching Legionnaire's disease, are demanding a mains water supply. Last summer, Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust (AWP) not

DISGRUNTLED families in Barrow Gurney, who have been unable to use their showers for nine months for fear of catching Legionnaire's disease, are demanding a mains water supply. Last summer, Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust (AWP) notified the residents of 20 former staff cottages that Legionella bacteria had been found in the hospital's water system, which supplies their homes.They were advised to refrain from having showers 'as a precautionary measure', and to ensure their water is safe, it is monitored 24 hours a day.On Friday, an expert arrived on the site to add a drinkable disinfectant to the properties' water supply, flush through all water outlets and clean shower heads, so householders could finally use their showers again.The specialist also took water samples from each home which will be analysed in due course and residents notified of the findings.But with sale negotiations under way, and the trust expected to vacate the site in June, residents are demanding a mains water supply.A resident, who does not wish to be named, said: "Once the trust leaves the site, who shall we call if our showers stop working, or if our water becomes cloudy, or contains scum, as it has in the past? "The trust should pay for our homes to be connected to the mains water supply, to guarantee the quality of our water."A spokesman for Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust said: "AWP has taken a precautionary approach to delivering a safe water supply at Barrow Hospital and the nearby, privately-owned cottages, including regular monitoring of the safety of the water."We have significantly invested in improving the water supply, which we believe has greatly reduced any water interruptions."We are calling on the future developer of the Barrow site to maintain the water supply to the cottages.

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