Floods forecast for weekend following one of mildest Octobers on record


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The Independent Online

Last month was one of the mildest Octobers on record.

But despite being the seventh warmest in 100 years, parts of the UK also saw some of the wettest weather for the time of the year, and further flooding is expected this weekend.

The national weather service has issued a warning for southern England, alerting the public to the risk of localised flooding today and Sunday as heavy rain hits the coast and more stormy weather blows over the country, the Met Office has said.

The areas worst hit by last Sunday and Monday's powerful St Jude storm - which was the worst in 26 years and killed five people - will once again bear the brunt of the bad weather, with close to one inch of rain predicted in the South East.

Gemma Plumb, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said the new month will bring "drier and chillier weather as would be expected in November" while October was the mildest the UK has seen since 2006.

The South West, south Wales and Midlands saw the highest above average temperatures, at 1.5C warmer than is usual for the month.

But although it was milder than usual, it was also the least sunny October since 2005 and the wettest in England and Wales since 2000, Ms Plumb said.

Many areas of the UK will see showers and high winds today and tomorrow, with gusts of up to 60mph predicted in Wales.

The stormy weather will strengthen on Sunday when the worst of the weather arrives and the risk of flooding will be at its highest following days of rain.

There are fears the latest spell of disruptive weather will hamper recovery efforts following this week's storms, although it is not expected to be anywhere near as bad.

Tim Fields of the Energy Networks Association said: "A lot of the places that are still without power are quite remote, with small numbers of people where there are downed power lines.

"All the network operators will be in close contact with the Met Office during the weekend and we hope to have everyone back on supply by the end of next week.

"Flooding does not normally present a huge threat to the energy infrastructure but extensive flooding would definitely pose a risk."