UK weather: London and South East hit by flash flooding – in pictures

Three polling stations in Greater London have been relocated due to flooding of buildings and nearby roads

Matt Payton
Thursday 23 June 2016 14:44

Torrential rain heralded by an overnight lightning and thunderstorm has caused extensive flooding in parts of London and the South East.

A number of EU referendum polling stations have been forced to relocate while homes, businesses and major transport links have suffered significant water damage.

Passengers at Clapham Junction train station in South London encountered difficulties when one entrance was closed due to flooding, overcrowded platforms and misleading message boards.

One passenger said: "The trains which did arrive didn't match the ones on the displays so it was difficult to plan alternative routes.

"It was difficult to even enter the station because an entrance had been closed due to flooding.

"You can't blame the staff, who were doing the best they could with little information, but it's a disgrace to have to put up with these conditions, trains arriving hopelessly late, and then being rammed into stiflingly full carriages - when they eventually arrived - and still paying top dollar."

Flooded railway tracks at Clapham Junction, South London

Cars in areas of Essex and parts of London have been abandoned after being submerged on flooded streets.

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: "We have seen a massive uplift in calls for help, with hundreds of extra breakdowns in London, Kent and East Anglia. Alternative routes have become badly affected by the sheer volume of vehicles as drivers try to avoid the jams, and sadly this has led to yet more breakdowns."

A car stuck under a railway bridge on Latchmere Road in Battersea, London

A couple expecting their first child in a month were forced to abandon their ground floor flat in Romford, Essex, after flood water damaged the home. David and Lidia Sandor are not expected to be able to return for at least two months.

Mr Sandor's sister, Elizabeth Bodea, who lives upstairs in a flat the same block said: "The rain started around 1am and around 3am the ground floor was flooded because the drainage couldn't cope.

"It was pouring like I have never seen in my life. We phoned the emergency services but they said they had to go to people in greater need.

"I am worried about my sister-in-law because I wanted to be there to help her with the baby. They have just bought all the baby stuff and some of it was damaged."

Cars stranded on a residential street in Barking, Essex

During the night, the London Fire Brigade (LFB) received more than 300 calls reporting weather-related incidents including lightning striking property, flooded homes and businesses, and vehicles trapped by rising waters.

Wimbledon School of Art in south west London was evacuated by the London Fire Brigade after flood water in the boiler room caused smoke to fill the place.

Two fire engines were called to West Norwood train station after smoke started pouring from the flooded track during rush hour. Commuters were evacuated from trains and continued their journey by bus.

Flooding outside the Grange Primary School in Newham, east London as torrential downpours and flooding have swamped parts of London

Two polling stations in Kingston upon Thames - Shiraz Miraz and Devon Way - have been forced to close due to flooding.

Kingston Borough Council has moved the stations to unaffected locations nearby.

And in the borough of Barking and Dagenham – the St Thomas More Church polling station in Beaconsfield has been relocated due to a burst water main caused by flooding.

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