UK weather: More floods and storms forecast - with thousands already hit by power cuts

13,000 properties are still cut off from power

One thousand people were evacuated from their homes in southern England as flooding hit yesterday, with the Environment Agency warning the situation could get worse across parts of the UK and winds of up to 90mph forecast.

Eleven people also had to be evacuated from properties in Wey Meadow area of Weybridge in Surrey this morning.

The Met Office has issued yellow and amber weather warnings, indicating "severe or hazardous weather" with potential to "cause danger to life or widespread disruption".

The worst-affected areas are expected to be northern England and northern parts of Wales.

John Griffiths, a forecaster for MeteoGroup UK, said: "There will be some very, very strong winds and blustery showers in places tomorrow.

"The winds will start to pick up this afternoon and evening. Tomorrow around 6am there will be some strong gusts of wind going up to 90mph."

Helen Roberts, a forecaster from the Met Office, said: "The storm will push in from the west overnight, bringing wet and windy weather to much of the UK.

"There will be very strong gales inland at times and severe gales on the western coast."

People in the south east and south west of England were worst hit when heavy rain and floods forced hundreds to evacuate properties by boat as rivers burst their banks. 13,000 properties are still cut off from power and could face waiting to a week to have it restored.

The Energy Networks Association said engineers were experiencing problems working in heavily flooded parts such as Kent, Sussex and Surrey.

Spokesman Tim Field said the BBC: "The nature of the work the engineers are having to do, the severity of the damage caused by the storm, also some very challenging conditions such as flooded roads and roads blocked by debris has made repairs much more difficult."

 The Environment Agency has 84 severe flood warnings in place and 165 flood alert warnings across the UK. Two severe flood warnings remain on the Stour in Dorset.

Continuing power cuts also left thousands unable to cook or heat their homes, with energy distributors offering to pay for food and accommodation in local pubs, restaurants and hotels.

In addition to the floods, strong winds left roads blocked with trees and debris, making travel difficult - not least for engineers attempting to reconnect power to the thousands of homes cut off.

There were also delays and cancellations at railways and airports, leaving thousands of passengers stranded. Tim Field, of the Energy Networks Association, said about 50,000 homes were without power on Christmas Day, but expected the majority to be back online on Boxing Day. "We are making arrangements with local authorities, charities and businesses to host and feed those without power. We are also making calls to the elderly and vulnerable to see if they need help," he said.

A spokesman for the Environment Agency said it had cut the number of severe weather warnings from three to two, both in South-West England, but warned that "it would take time for the water to pass through the system".

Late on Christmas Eve, 76 residents of the Little Venice Caravan and Marina Park at Yalding, Kent, were evacuated by boat and 4x4 vehicles by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) and Kent Fire and Rescue as water levels on the River Medway reached "chest height" and caravans lifted. An MCA manager, Aimee Rampton, said: "We were operating under force majeure to help the residents of Little Venice as our normal area of operation is along our coasts and shorelines. The people at the caravan site needed help and the flood waters were rising rapidly, so our specially trained water rescue teams swung into action."

A further 90 people were evacuated from their homes on the River Stour near Bournemouth early on Christmas Day. Police began to evacuate residents of the Ilford Bridge Home Park at 3am following a severe flood warning.

One resident Pat Tapply, 79, said: "I would just like to know how bad it is. All the presents are by my fireplace, I don't know what they are but I hope they are still there when I can come back."

People were also evacuated at Beaulieu Garden Park Home in Christchurch, Dorset.

The  Environment Agency has 126 flood warnings in place across England and Wales on Boxing Day morning, mainly in South-East England, the South-west and the Midlands. A further 218 flood alerts remain in place, with 90 in the South-East. The agency said that by Wednesday evening 150 properties had been flooded in England, mainly in the south. Families had to be evacuated from homes in Dorking, Leatherhead and Guildford in Surrey, and 40 properties were evacuated in Godalming because of concerns over the height of the River Wey. A rest centre was set up for evacuees.

Emergency services operate in Yalding Emergency services operate in Yalding (Getty)  

More evacuations were ordered in Tonbridge, Kent, where 100 people had to abandon their plans for Christmas lunch at a pub after it was flooded. Staff at Wetherspoons said they had tried to relocate diners at alternative premises where possible.

About 800 homes in the north of Scotland were still without power last night, mainly around the Banchory, Buchan and Aboyne areas in Aberdeenshire, and Forres and Fochabers in Elgin.

Travellers trying to get home on Christmas Eve fought treacherous conditions on the roads and suffered major delays as the rail network was crippled.

A power cut at Gatwick Airport's North Terminal led to cancellations and delays for thousands of passengers who were left stranded until yesterday, when the majority of flights resumed.

Forecast: more misery ahead

People have been advised to make the most of Boxing Day because storms and heavy rain could bring a return of Christmas Eve’s travel problems by the end of the week.

Thursday is expected to be cold but dry and sunny for most of the country, with a chance of snow in parts of Scotland and the odd light shower elsewhere.

However, the wind is expected to pick up from the west overnight, bringing squally rain down on already saturated ground.

Emma Compton, a forecaster at the Met Office, said: “We are expecting gales around coastal areas, particularly in the west and higher ground, of around 60mph. There is also much more rain to come on Friday and a risk of flooding. We could see between 10 and 20mm of rain fall, and may even get up to 30mm which could again cause some disruption.”

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
Child's play: letting young people roam outdoors directly contradicts the current climate
lifeHow much independence should children have?
Arts and Entertainment
Tycoons' text: Warren Buffett and Bill Gates both cite John Brookes' 'Business Adventures' as their favourite book
booksFind out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Arts and Entertainment
<p><strong>2008</strong></p>
<p>Troubled actor Robert Downey Jr cements his comeback from drug problems by bagging the lead role in Iron Man. Two further films follow</p>
filmRobert Downey Jr named Hollywood's highest paid actor for second year running
Life and Style
Dale Bolinger arranged to meet the girl via a fetish website
life
Property
Sign here, please: Magna Carta Island
propertyYours for a cool £4m
Life and Style
tech
News
The Commonwealth flag flies outside Westminster Abbey in central London
news
Arts and Entertainment
Struggling actors who scrape a living working in repertory theatres should get paid a 'living wage', Sir Ian McKellen has claimed
theatre
News
Skye McCole Bartusiak's mother said she didn't use drink or drugs
peopleActress was known for role in Mel Gibson film The Patriot
Arts and Entertainment
tvWebsite will allow you to watch all 522 shows on-demand
Arts and Entertainment
filmThe Rock to play DC character in superhero film
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
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

C# .Net Developer

£23000 - £35000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: C# .Net Develop re...

Electronics Design Engineer

£35000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: My client are l...

Senior BI Engineer (BI/MI, Data Mining)

£60000 - £65000 per annum + Bonus & Benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior BI Enginee...

IT Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: We are seeking a teacher o...

Day In a Page

Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary
Legoland Windsor's master model-makers reveal the tricks of their trade (including how to stop the kids wrecking your Eiffel Tower)

Meet the people who play with Lego for a living

They are the master builders: Lego's crack team of model-makers, who have just glued down the last of 650,000 bricks as they recreate Paris in Windsor. Susie Mesure goes behind the scenes
The 20 best days out for the summer holidays: From Spitfires to summer ferry sailings

20 best days out for the summer holidays

From summer ferry sailings in Tyne and Wear and adventure days at Bear Grylls Survival Academy to Spitfires at the Imperial War Museum Duxford and bog-snorkelling at the World Alternative Games...
Open-air theatres: If all the world is a stage, then everyone gets in on the act

All the wood’s a stage

Open-air productions are the cue for better box-office receipts, new audiences, more interesting artistic challenges – and a picnic
Rand Paul is a Republican with an eye on the world

Rupert Cornwell: A Republican with an eye on the world

Rand Paul is laying out his presidential stall by taking on his party's disastrous record on foreign policy
Self-preservation society: Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish

Self-preservation society

Pickles are moving from the side of your plate to become the star dish
Generation gap opens a career sinkhole

Britons live ever longer, but still society persists in glorifying youth

We are living longer but considered 'past it' younger, the reshuffle suggests. There may be trouble ahead, says DJ Taylor