Environment agency 'monitoring' River Aire after flooding in Yorkshire

Flooding at Cononley, Yorkshire taken Monday, September 30 2019.
Flooding at Cononley, Yorkshire taken Monday, September 30 2019.
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Predictions of torrential rain across the UK have triggered dozens of flood warnings and the issuing of a "precautionary evacuation notice" in one part of the country.

The Met Office has issued a yellow warning of heavy rain until midnight on Monday covering southern and central Wales and the West Midlands.

In Yorkshire, a huge area near Cononley between Keighley and Skipton was under water.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “River levels remain high in the Upper River Aire catchment today following the recent heavy rainfall, and Cononley Washlands are full.

“Levels have been steadily falling through today (Monday 30 September) but they are expected to rise again tomorrow in response to further rain expected tonight and into Tuesday. We are continuing to monitor the situation closely and our flood incident room remains open.”

The area on either side of the River Aire to the west of the A629 between Cross Hills and Skipton, near Cononley, is a managed washland.

This means that it is an area of the floodplain that is allowed to flood for flood management purposes.

Meanwhile, the extent of damage caused to West Park in Harrogate was clear to see after downpours during the final UCI Road World Championships at the weekend left it a mudbath.

And down beside the Severn in Gloucestershire, onlookers gathered to witness surfers ride a “four-star” tidal bore, a natural phenomenen usually following a new or full moon.

Nationally, forecasters said around 25mm of rain had already fallen in Pembrokeshire in south-west Wales earlier on Monday, with a further 10 to 15mm set to fall in the evening.

A further Met Office yellow weather warning for heavy showers is in place from 6am to 8pm on Tuesday covering the south of England, South Wales, the Midlands and parts of East Anglia.

Meteorologist Luke Miall said: "We could see some local quite torrential downpours and a risk of surface water flooding."

He warned that slow moving clouds on Tuesday meant "we could see as much as 40 to 50mm maybe in a couple of hours in some spots".

As of 8pm on Monday, the Environment Agency had issued 70 flood warnings advising immediate action and 184 flood alerts urging people to prepare for possible flooding, all covering the length and breadth of the country.

In west Norfolk, a "precautionary evacuation notice" has been issued for the coastal areas of Hunstanton, Heacham and Snettisham.

The Environment Agency said a combination of a high tide due at 8.40am on Tuesday and predicted force six north-westerly winds could result in flooding.

People are being told to leave caravans and properties in the area between 7am and 10am on Tuesday and not to return until it is safe to do so.

They are also urged to take with them any medication, pets and anything urgent they might need over the next 48 hours.

The public are also being advised to take care along beaches, promenades, coastal footpaths and roads as large waves and sea spray could be dangerous.

In the South West, the Environment Agency also told people to avoid the seafront and check on flood warnings due to forecast high tides and winds.

Natural Resources Wales encouraged drivers to take care on the roads because of the likelihood of surface water flooding on Monday night.

The Met Office warned that on Monday evening homes and businesses could be flooded, with the rainfall also possibly affecting buses, trains and road travel.

On Tuesday it said predicted heavy showers could bring a "small chance of fast-flowing or deep floodwater causing danger to life".

Earlier on Monday, Gloucestershire Police called off a search after a man, feared to have been swept away by the Severn Bore wave, was located safe and well.

A second call from someone concerned they had seen a person or animal struggling in floodwater was also stood down.

Rain and strong winds may also hit the UK later in the week as the remnants of ex-tropical storm Lorenzo arrive on Friday.

Currently classed as a category 2 hurricane, Lorenzo is due to hit west of the Portuguese Azores islands on Tuesday.

Mr Miall said the storm, becoming an "ex-hurricane", could track up to the west of the UK on Friday bringing heavy rain and winds of up to 60mph.

He emphasised that there was still "some uncertainty" over the possible course of the storm.