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We are very fortunate to have our hand-pumped water supply – we don’t have to pay meter charges and we are not subject to water restrictions. However, our pumps are old and need careful handling. Most pumps have a sign with instructions on use. These are:


Priming the pumps:

Pour clean water into the slot at the top of the pump until water starts to come out of the spout.

Slowly pump the handle smoothly using long strokes until you feel the pressure forcing water out – it is now primed and with steady pumping water will flow.

If the pump stops working or draws up sand, stop using it immediately and contact the pump team on


RPA pump

Sharing the pumps with other users

Always leave the tank full of clean water.

To prevent wildlife from drowning in the water tank either cover it or put in some wood or a crate for them to climb on


Keeping the tank water clean

The tank water must not be used for washing ANYTHING – tools, boots, vegetables, hands, dogs etc – as soil-borne diseases and viruses can be spread to other plots this way Soil, dirt and grit in the tank water may damage the pumps when it’s used for priming.



Do not allow children to operate the pumps or play with the water. This is not drinking water


To prevent freezing, the pumps are removed for the winter before the first hard frosts and are returned in early spring when the risk of severe frosts has passed.


If you choose to put a shed or greenhouse on your plot, we encourage you to fit guttering and water butts to harvest rainwater and take some pressure off the pumps.