Boats to rescue in Leeds village hit by ‘worst flooding in 20 years’ UPDATED

Floods at Allerton Bywater. PIC: Simon Hulme
Floods at Allerton Bywater. PIC: Simon Hulme
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STORM water flooded a Leeds school last night.

Residents in Allerton Bywater, near Leeds, were forced to protect their homes and business after a month’s worth of rain fell in 24 hours.

Firefighters were called to pump out premises in Victoria Street and Main Street after water levels rose from the River Aire.

Fire crews had to use boats to rescue four people who were stranded at addresses on Barnsdale Road.

Cars were left submerged after the road was closed by the flooding on Saturday.

Peter Ashby, who lives on Main Street, said that he tried to travel along Barnsdale Road earlier in the day but said that the water was higher than the bonnet of his van.

He added: “There has been some surface water around here before but I have never seen it like this before.”

Residents had to pull on wellies to wade down the roads and sandbags were handed out to pensioners living in sheltered housing on Victoria Street.

Michelle Dwan, the landlady of the Victoria Hotel, said that she would be left counting the cost after the flood wrecked her basement.

She said: “We were just completely surrounded by water at the front.

“It has never been this bad and I have had at least six pumps in my cellar trying to clear the water.

“Someone told me that the water at Lock Lane was six foot deep.

“I dread to think how much it will cost because we can’t get flood insurance here.”

Parish councillor Stephen Murray has called for measures to be put in place to prevent this from happening again.

He said: “It is the worst flooding seen around here for 20 years.

“It is an area that has always flooded at the bottom end of the village.

“We have been working on this for the last two or three months and Yorkshire Water are looking to carry out a survey on the drainage system.”

Flooding badly affected the West Yorkshire towns of Hebden Bridge and Mytholmroyd.

The River Calder at Hebden Bridge measured a record 3.2 metres and at one point 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.