Water. It was wet. It came from the sky ...

Trevor Newton, the chief executive of Yorkshire Water, has advised his drought-hit customers to do as he does and skip baths and showers. What will he think of next? Let's leap forward nine months and see what Mr Newton and his team have come up with

Memo to all staff 21 June 1996

From Trevor Newton

As most of you will know, today marks a very special anniversary for Christine and me. It is now exactly a year since we last bathed or showered. In that time we have discovered a number of other exciting ways to cut back on water usage in Yorkshire and it is these that I want to share with you.

1. Beer. We now boil all our food in this valuable local resource. It also makes a splendid car windscreen wash and hair shampoo - though I should point out that the "number two" close-cropped haircuts that Christine and I adopted in the spring have virtually eliminated the need for frequent shampooing.

2. Lavatories. Frequent flushing wastes gallons. By cutting fibre out of our diet - fruit, vegetables, muesli - we've managed to keep our visits to three a week with a minimum of side-effects. When visiting less drought- hit regions, however, we do take the chance to treat ourselves in hotels and restaurants.

3. Washing-up. Nomads and desert adventurers have always used sand to clean their plates. We now keep a sack of it from Scarborough beach in the kitchen, pop the theme from Lawrence of Arabia on the record player and have everything spick and span in a matter of three or four hours.

4. Lawns. Painful as this will be, I think we must accept that grassy lawns now qualify as "sites of special scientific interest". My own has now gone "back to basics", but the selection of boulders and cacti is much loved by friends and family and may well be entered for this year's Best Kept Garden award.

Lawn bowls as a sport has clearly altered somewhat. I would like, therefore, to invite you all to enter this summer's Yorkshire Water Petanque Championships, for which the prize is a week in a French spa town - accommodation and unlimited baths included.

5. Washing. Last year a scientist confirmed that washing with a damp sponge is quite satisfactory, as long as attention is paid to the armpits, feet and crotch areas. I'm happy to announce that as of this week I've eliminated the sponge. I now find that a few vigorous strokes with a pumice stone are perfectly adequate.

6. Drinking water. Exciting news. The Scots laughed at us, but the French came up trumps. The Evian pipeline has now reached Calais and we expect to be "on-line", mineral water-wise, by Christmas!

We are all looking for innovative ways to cut back on usage and make the company money. Thus I hope to have more details soon of the Yorkshire Water Diet. We're all of us made up of 80 per cent water: stop drinking it and the pounds fall off.

PS: I've an anonymous note that says "Remember what Sarah Miles used to drink." Will anyone who can shed any light please see me?

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Ashdown Group: Linux Systems Engineer - Linux, Windows, Cloud - Central London

    £40000 - £48000 per annum + 10% bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Engin...

    Recruitment Genius: Quality Inspector

    £20000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

    Recruitment Genius: Female Buddy & Team Leader / Buddy

    £11 per hour: Recruitment Genius: To join a team working with a female in her ...

    Recruitment Genius: Configuration and Logistics Team Member

    £16000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company has over 30 years ...

    Day In a Page

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

    Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
    Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

    Aviation history is littered with grand failures

    But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

    Fortress Europe?

    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
    Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

    Never mind what you're wearing

    It's what you're reclining on that matters
    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence