Two killed as gales strike in festive getaway

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Two people died yesterday as heavy rain and gales battered much of the UK, while thousands of people faced travel chaos trying to make it home for Christmas.

The body of a man was pulled from the swollen Rothay River, in Ambleside, Cumbria, after a search was launched when a member of the public reported seeing a man fall in.

Just after an hour later, a body was recovered and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Cumbria Police warned people not to enter local rivers or lakes, describing the water as “very fast moving and dangerous”.

North Wales Police said they had been alerted to reports of a woman in a river at Nant Ffrancon, Bethesda, at 3.57pm yesteday.

Police officers, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and a Mountain Rescue Team were called to help but the woman was pronounced dead at the scene. Both deaths are being investigated.