THE new year got off to a wet start with heavy rain – and flood alerts, which were lifted just four days earlier.
Three warnings were issued yesterday for the river Severn at Court Meadow, Kempsey, and Callow End, the river Avon at Strensham, Bredon and Wyre Piddle and the river Teme at Bransford and Stanford Bridge after levels rose.
On New Year’s Day 30mm of rain fell in Malvern – one of the wettest first days to a new year.
The Severn was lower than when it burst its banks at Christmas, but the river and other affected waters were expected to reach their peak between yesterday and Saturday afternoon with more bad weather to come, which weatherman Frank Hill said could cause problems during the weekend.
He said: “It looks like we’re going to get further periods of rain and fairly strong winds for the next few days until Tuesday.
“Sunday will be quite wet and looks like the biggest threat at the moment. We’re expecting strong winds this afternoon with gusts of more than 40mph and some rain.
“Then on Sunday afternoon and Sunday night there will be winds up to about 45mph and quite a lot of rain.”
But brighter weather is on the horizon.
Mr Hill said: “After Tuesday, it could get a bit drier but a bit colder.
“We had a long run of depressions across the Atlantic, which caused the bad weather, but there’s a break on the way.”
Eckington Bridge and Jubilee Bridge were closed due to flooding as well as Church Street in Eckington, and Mill Bank in Fladbury.
Horn Lane, near Worcester, was just passable because of flood water and surface water was reported by the golf club in Bransford.
Five alerts were also issued alongside the warnings for the county, which included Barbourne Brook, Bow and Piddle Brook, the rivers Severn and Avon, Lower Teme, and one covering River Isbourne, Badsey Brook, Honeybourne Brook, Bretforton Brook, Littleton Brook and their tributaries.
Meetings have been taking place with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Environment Agency and local councils to ensure flooded areas are being offered all possible support to limit damage.
Anyone concerned about flooding should sign up to the Environment Agency’s flood warnings and follow any advice issued. It can be found at environmentagency.gov.uk/homeandleisure/floods/.