FIVE of the strangest things found down the region′s drains...


Here at Northumbrian Water our engineers have found some weird and wonderful things in the drains and sewers of the North East.

The rule is that only toilet paper, pee and poo should be flushed down the loo, however over the years there have been some ‘interesting’ things found causing blockages in our networks.

Here is a rundown of the top five strangest things found in our drains:

1) A shower curtain

A full size shower curtain that someone, somehow, managed to flush. It caused a lot of damage to our network in Jesmond

2) A pair of false teeth

One fully operational set of false teeth. Found in a drainage pipe in Stanley. Funnily enough the owner never got back in touch with us to reclaim them!

3) An animal skull

A full size animal skull found blocking our networks in South Tyneside. Creepy.

4) One full can of Foster’s lager

A full can of lager found, unopened, in South Tyneside having been flushed down the toilet. What a waste.

5) A ladies’ bra

A ladies’ bra found blocking one of our sewers in Teesside. It caused so much damage that the sewer actually collapsed.

Turns out that the North East isn’t the only place in the country where this is an issue, with items including a dismantled greenhouse, a space hopper and even a hand grenade being found in the bowels of sewers in other areas.

Although bizarre, none of these items come close to matching the pain in the drain caused by the thousands of wet wipes flushed down the loo, or the greasy fats and oils poured down the sink.
Northumbrian Water engineers expect to clear around 17,500 blockages this year and more than half of these will have been preventable and caused by items wrongly flushed or put down the drains.

The consequences of blockages can be very unpleasant and nobody wants to wake up to the contents of their sewer in their home or garden.

Help us by ensuring that only toilet paper, pee and poo go down the loo. Put other items in the bin.

It can save you money, protect your plumbing and drainage and help the environment.

For more information on how to #LoveYourDrain visit

For further media information, call 0191 3015678.

Northumbrian Water Limited supplies 2.7 million customer in the North East with both water and sewerage services, trading as Northumbrian Water, and 1.8 million customers in the South East with water services, trading as Essex & Suffolk Water.

In the most recent survey by the Consumer Council for Water, Northumbrian Water was named the UK’s most trusted water company by its customers, while 2017/2018 customer satisfaction scores placed the company in joint first place. 2017 also saw Northumbrian Water named the world’s most ethical water company for the seventh successive year.

Abbey Road, Pity Me, Durham DH1 5FJ. Telephone 0345 6047468. Website:

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