Homes evacuated as month's worth of rain falls in a day

 

More than 11,000 homes and businesses are being protected by flood defences and owners of 7,000 properties have been issued with warnings as people were forced to flee after more than a month's worth of rain fell in 24 hours.

The Environment Agency said people should remain vigilant and warned of further rain throughout Saturday and into Sunday in areas of northern England already counting the cost of what it said was "exceptional rainfall and record river levels".

There are 95 areas under a flood warning, where rivers are expected to burst their banks, with a further 51 on alert for possible flooding as defences in areas including Preston, Wigan, Catterall and Garstang were used to stop the rising water.

The deluge battered revellers at the Isle of Wight Festival and brought havoc to Cumbria which buckled under the worst of the wet weather.

As much as 100mm of rain fell on the region overnight, while south-west Scotland, Northern Ireland and Lancashire also experienced unusually heavy rainfall.

An Environment Agency spokesman said: "A month's rain has fallen over parts of north-west and north-east England in the last 24 hours and with further rain expected later today, we would urge the public to remain vigilant and sign up to Environment Agency flood warnings.

"We also urge the public to stay away from fast-flowing, swollen rivers and not to drive through floodwater."

The outlook for the coming days is more promising. A band of wet weather is expected to sweep the country from west to east tonight. Forecasts suggest it will pass relatively quickly, meaning no one place should see more than five hours of rain.

Amounts of between 10mm-15mm are expected to fall quite widely before clearing in many areas tomorrow, with much of the country expected to see a dry day on Monday.

People flooded out of their homes should be able to recoup the cost of temporary accommodation from their insurer, according to the Association of British Insurers.

Nick Starling, ABI's director of general insurance, said: "Unwelcome events like this are exactly why people take out insurance, and insurers will very quickly be mobilising claims staff to get claims moving and to help relieve the trauma that those flooded are facing."

Forecasters said water levels would begin to recede but further showers are expected to slow the clear-up process, meaning some areas will remain swamped.

The bad weather is set to improve, with the possibility of sunshine for festival-goers on Sunday.

Matt Dobson, senior forecaster at MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said Borrowdale in Cumbria bore the brunt of the bad weather with an estimated 100mm of rain.

"It has been exceptionally wet overnight across Cumbria," he said.

"By the end of the night, it is fair to say that probably 70mm-100mm fell over 24 hours which is a month's worth of rain. It looks like the worst is probably now over for Cumbria. There will still be some showers today and overnight but it is not going to be anywhere near as bad as it has been.

"The worst weather today is going to be across Scotland where there is likely to be further heavy rain or thunder storms. But the good news is the Isle of Wight is likely to have a dry day."

Met Office severe weather warnings are in place in the North West, Yorkshire and Humber, West Midlands, the South West, Northern Ireland, Strathclyde, south-west and central Scotland, the Lothians, the Scottish Borders, Tayside and Fife.

The Met Office said the wettest places in the country yesterday were all in Cumbria, Lancashire and West Yorkshire.

Blencathra in Cumbria - 93.8mm (3.6in) - was the worst affected, followed by Keswick (88.6mm/3.4in), Stonyhurst in Lancashire (74.4mm/2.9in), Levens Hall in Cumbria (58.2mm/2.3in) and Morecambe on the Lancashire coast (57mm/2.2in).

Some families spent the night in temporary accommodation after they were evacuated from properties in Lancashire when rivers burst their banks.

A concert tonight by singer and Doctor Who actor John Barrowman at the new Tower Festival Headland venue in Blackpool has been cancelled on health and safety grounds, a spokesman said.

Severe flooding also hit areas of West Yorkshire overnight, especially in the Calderdale area.

The centres of the towns of Hebden Bridge and Mytholmroyd were inundated and Todmorden was also badly affected, firefighters said.

Overnight, the River Calder at Hebden Bridge measured a record 3.2 metres.

At one point yesterday evening West Yorkshire Fire Service issued a message saying it could only respond to incidents in which life was in danger due to the amount of calls.

Further north, firefighters in the Yorkshire Dales had to rescue people from cars trapped by flash flooding.

Councillor Simon Young said the River Calder burst its banks at about 9pm last night in Mytholmroyd, West Yorkshire.

"It was really a pretty devastating picture," he said.

"Countless homes and businesses were under water in the centre of Mytholmroyd.

"I've spoken to a lot of people, a lot of whom have lived in the area for years, and they cannot remember anything like this in the last 24 years."

An 80-year-old pensioner was hospitalised yesterday with serious injuries following a collision in heavy rain on the A6112 between Preston and Duns in the Scottish Borders at around 2.15pm.

PA

News
people
Sport
FootballGerman sparks three goals in four minutes at favourite No 10 role
News
Rumer was diagnosed with bipolarity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder: 'I was convinced it was a misdiagnosis'
peopleHer debut album caused her post-traumatic stress - how will she cope as she releases her third record?
Sport
A long jumper competes in the 80-to-84-year-old age division at the 2007 World Masters Championships
athletics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
Radamel Falcao was forced to withdraw from the World Cup after undergoing surgery
premier leagueExclusive: Reds have agreement with Monaco
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvHe is only remaining member of original cast
Life and Style
Walking tall: unlike some, Donatella Versace showed a strong and vibrant collection
fashionAlexander Fury on the staid Italian clothing industry
Arts and Entertainment
Gregory Porter learnt about his father’s voice at his funeral
music
Arts and Entertainment
tvHighs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
Life and Style
Children at the Leytonstone branch of the Homeless Children's Aid and Adoption Society tuck into their harvest festival gifts, in October 1936
food + drinkThe harvest festival is back, but forget cans of tuna and packets of instant mash
Sport
Lewis Hamilton will start the Singapore Grand Prix from pole, with Nico Rosberg second and Daniel Ricciardo third
F1... for floodlit Singapore Grand Prix
New Articles
i100
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
life
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Volunteer Trustee opportunities now available at The Society for Experimental Biology

Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Volunteer your expertise as Tr...

Early Years Educator

£68 - £73 per day + Competitive rates of pay based on experience: Randstad Edu...

Nursery Nurse

£69 - £73 per day + Competitive London rates of pay: Randstad Education Group:...

Primary KS1 NQTs required in Lambeth

£117 - £157 per day + Competitive London rates: Randstad Education Group: * Pr...

Day In a Page

Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam