AN INTERACTIVE map shows the hotspots of a radioactive gas which is colourless, odourless and tasteless.

Radon is a radioactive gas that undetectable unless you have specialist equipment.

It is formed from uranium in rocks and soil and can make its way into buildings built on top of this land.

Public Health England (PHE) said every building contains radon but the levels are usually low.

It only poses a risk to health when found in large quantities and after long-term exposure.

Why is it a risk?

The Public Health England website says radon causes over 1,100 deaths from lung cancer each year in the UK.

Anything radioactive has potential to cause damage to our health, especially in large quantities.

Radiation is a form of energy and can cause damage in living tissues increasing the risk of cancer.

According to Public Health England, radon can increase your risk of lung cancer- with this risk increasing with higher radon levels and longer exposure times.

The risk from radon is higher if the person is an ex-smoker and significantly greater for current smokers.

Herefordshire areas with the highest radon affected areas

Public Health England defines radon affected areas as those with 1% chance or more of a house having a radon concentration at or above the Action Level of 200 Bq m-3.

They have created an interactive map detailing where high levels of radon are more likely and the estimated percentage of homes in an area which are above the radon Action Level.

The chances of a higher level of radon depend on the type of ground.

If you are in a 'high risk' area, it doesn't necessarily mean that your house has excessively high radon levels- but you can order a measurement pack to check.

PHE said: “The darker the colour the greater the chance of a higher level.

“The chance is less than one home in a hundred in the white areas and greater than one in three in the darkest areas.”

Most of Herefordshire is in a band of “elevated radon potential” of 1-3 per cent which is classed as a ‘medium’ risk.

In areas between Leominster and Bromyard, surrounding Ledbury, and along the Welsh border, the maximum radon potential is higher, at 5-10 per cent.

And levels of 10-30 per cent are found in some areas, including to the east of Ledbury and west of Ross-on-Wye.

How to reduce risk

  • Find out if you live in a radon risk area
  • If you do, measure your home
  • If the radon is high, reduce it
  • If you smoke, give up

How can I carry out a test of my home?

Public Health England offer home measurement packs to check the levels over a three-month period.

They can be purchased at the following website:

To check if your area has a high risk of Radon, use the map here: