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Not again! Flood-hit Tewkesbury devastated in 2007 is back under water after the wettest April on record

david kingstrom By david kingstrom | May 02, 2012 | United Kingdom

Five years ago incredible aerial shots above Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire became symbolic of the devastating effect of nationwide flooding in England. The latest rain have left the town on alert again, with the Environment Agency setting up an incident room as heavy rain continued to cause the River Severn to rise.

Relentless rain across the county,  the most recent downpours have left Tewkesbury almost submerged again as in 2007. 

Ian Lock, landlord of the Boat Inn at Ashleworth, which is south of Tewkesbury next to the River Severn, told the water was “worryingly high”.

“If we’d had a high tide on Saturday night we would have had trouble, thankfully we didn’t.   We still could flood, the worry is if other towns further up the river put their flood defences up the water will come down here and we’ll suffer”.

Unfinished flood defences in Upton-on-Severn, which had to be shored up over the weekend, had kept water out and Tewkesbury, badly hit during the 2007 floods, had experienced some localised flooding but nothing unusual for the area, the Environment Agency said.

Pubs, fields, and residential streets nonetheless appeared on the brink of being submerged today, as the wet conditions failed to significantly reduce.

Days of heavy rain has caused chaos across much of England and Wales, but the country is braced for further flooding after forecasters predicted more rain to come.

Despite the drought and the hosepipe ban, the Met Office today confirmed this April has been the wettest on record, with 'well above' average rainfall across the UK, with 97mm recorded, or 140 per cent of the long-term monthly average.

The Environment Agency warned of localised flooding across parts of southern and eastern England, Midlands and Wales, with a total of 35 flood warnings and 173 flood alerts in place on its website.

A spokeswoman said:  “It’s not unusual to experience heavy downpours and some flooding,  mainly of farmland,  at this time of year,  but we’re continuing to closely monitor the forecast and rainfall particularly in areas along the rivers Severn, Teme and Avon, including Worcestershire, Shropshire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire".

Environment Agency teams are out on the ground continuing a close watch on river levels as well as checking defences and clearing any potential blockages to reduce the risk of flooding.

  • Tags:   Tewkesbury Gloucestershire England River Severn flooding April 2012
  • Categories:  Culture Politics

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