Boy dies, woman missing as flood toll rises

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A 14-YEAR-OLD boy died and a 33-year-old woman was missing after floods continued to cause chaos across large parts of the country, writes Mark Rowe. The Environment Agency said, however, that the worst of the flooding is over.

Carl Giles, from Coventry, was found by police a day after a van was swept from a flooded road into the River Leam, near Eathorpe in Warwickshire. Police have also given up hope of finding alive a woman who fell off a narrow boat into the swollen River Nene in Northampton.

The Met Office said that the heavy rain has now relented. "There will be some showers but the rain won't be as intense as we have seen in the area of the River Avon," he said, but warned it would remain unsettled, cold and wintry until at least the middle of the week.

An Environment Agency spokesman said 29 areas of the country were still on emergency flood alert, mainly across central and eastern England.

"We have had a month's rainfall in 24 hours," he said.

In Stratford-upon-Avon, the Royal Shakespeare Theatre was marooned by flood water. Appropriately, the theatre is staging The Tempest.

Oxford remained on red alert after levels in the River Cherwell rose. Around 100 people were evacuated in the nearby village of Kidlington, Oxfordshire, where Richard Branson's home has also been hit by serious flooding.

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