Thames Water was accused of ‘not giving a toss’ after a leak off Iffley Road has been left to disgorge gallons of water for weeks.

The burst pipe on Howard Street, near the junction with Iffley Road, was reported on January 23.

And while workmen were seen parked up in a van some four days later, aside from cones being left on parking bays no work was done to start fixing the leak.

Damaris Darby, who has lived on the street for around a decade, said she had skidded off her bike late last month after the puddling water froze into black ice.

She criticised poor communication from Thames Water and the seemingly lethargic efforts by the water company to fix the leak.

“Why has it taken two weeks? This is really serious; there’s lots and lots of water going down the drain,” she said.

“Last summer we were told it’s not okay for us to waste water; but it’s fine for them to waste water? That’s not okay.”

She said of the water company: “It just feels that they don’t give a toss.”

Mrs Darby added: They seem to have no sense of urgency.”

A Thames Water spokeswoman said on Monday (February 6): “Given the location, and to limit customer impact, our repairs team are undertaking the work overnight.

“We expect to complete the repair and reinstate the road later this week. We’d like to apologise to local customers for any inconvenience caused during this time.”

She said the company ‘prioritised’ its repair work, focusing on larger leaks first. “Finding and fixing leaks is a top priority, with over 1,100 repairs made each week,” the spokeswoman said.

Last week, Thames Water came in for heavy criticism from Oxford city councillors, who voted through a motion for the company to meet with the council’s elected representatives. The motion, which was brought by the Green Party, also called for the renationalisation of the water companies.

Cllr Chris Jarvis said: “While the whole tree of water privatisation is undoubtedly rotten, Thames Water is among the worst of the apples.”

Other councillors spoke of recent leaks, including the burst water main at Heyford Hill last October that left thousands of homes without running water, and issues with sewage being pumped into the Thames and its tributaries.

Council leader Susan Brown told her colleagues that the company had a ‘big, big job’ to convince councillors it was a responsible authority.

In response, Thames Water said it ‘welcomed ongoing discussions’ with Oxford City Council.