Water-ravaged Britain braces for another deluge as Storm Jorge hits

Jorge closes in! Water-ravaged Britain braces for another deluge as Spanish storm hits at lunchtime today bringing three inches of rain, 70mph gales and 10 more days of misery for flood victims

  • Spanish Storm Jorge is the fifth storm to hit the UK since December 6 last year and the third in February alone
  • Parts of Wales and northern England could see a month’s worth of rain today as the storm batters the country 
  • The Met Office has issued three days of weather warnings as forecasters warn it’s ‘not good news’ for Britons
  • 75 flood warnings and 119 flood alerts now issued as flood-hit communities brace for third weekend of misery
  • ** Have you taken any photographs of flooding where you are? Email them to [email protected] **

Flood-hit communities are preparing for another weekend deluge as Storm Jorge brings further heavy rain and strong winds to the United Kingdom today – with forecasters warning of 10 more days of misery.    

Parts of Wales and northern England could see up to 80mm of rain – a month’s worth – this afternoon as the storm hits, with the Met Office issuing three days of weather warnings. 

Downpours have already begun in the West Country with torrential rain forcing the closure of roads after a car smashed into the central reservation on the A38 at Moorswater, near Liskeard, Cornwall.

In Salisbury, Wiltshire Police are trying to find a man spotted swimming in a flooded river amid ‘serious concerns about his safety’ after he disappeared and locals were not able to find him.

Jorge, which was named by Spanish meteorological services rather than the Met Office, could bring strong winds to much of England, Wales and Northern Ireland on Saturday, reaching 70mph on coasts and up to 60mph inland. 

Police have warned flood-hit families across Shropshire and Worcestershire, where evacuations have been taking place in towns throughout this week, to expect ‘another ten days of difficult conditions’ with more heavy rain due. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has declined to say whether he will be visiting areas where people have been made homeless by recent floods, while visiting the headquarters of a charity for the homeless on Thursday morning.

It comes as flood-hit residents in Ironbridge refused to leave their homes yesterday amid fears over looting as they praised the community for ‘looking out for each other’ amid warnings over a further ten days of misery. 

When asked about the weekend’s weather prospects, Met Office forecaster Emma Salter said: ‘It’s not good news I’m afraid, given all the recent rainfall we’ve had.’ She described Friday as ‘another wet and breezy day’. 

The Fire Brigade come to the aid of two men stuck in their vehicle in flood water in East Cowick where residents have been evacuated from their homes in Yorkshire

Flood-hit communities are preparing for another weekend deluge as Storm Jorge brings further heavy rain and strong winds to the United Kingdom today – with forecasters warning of 10 more days of misery (pictured, the next three days of weather)

Police have warned flood-hit families across Shropshire and Worcestershire, where evacuations have been taking place in towns throughout this week, to expect ‘another ten days of difficult conditions’ with more heavy rain due (pictured, a lorry stuck in flood waters in East Cowick, Yorkshire today)

A home is flooded in East Cowick, Yorkshire today ahead of further rain over the weekend. Storm Jorge will hit this afternoon bring further misery to flood-ravaged communities

A landlord has been forced to row around his pub in a boat after it flooded three times in a month – leaving him in two feet of water and with a £50,000 repair bill (pictured, Mr Fox in his boat)

Parts of Wales and northern England could see up to 80mm of rain – a month’s worth – this afternoon as the storm hits, with the Met Office issuing three days of weather warnings (pictured today, the River Severn in Gloucester has burst its banks)

A severe ‘danger to life’ flood warning covering the river at the Wharfage in Ironbridge, Shropshire, remains in place, while 74 flood warnings and 118 flood alerts have been issued


Storm Jorge is set to move across the United Kingdom through the weekend. Jorge, which was named by Spanish meteorological services rather than the Met Office, could bring strong winds to much of England, Wales and Northern Ireland on Saturday, reaching 70mph on coasts and up to 60mph inland

The Peak District was covered with a blanket of snow, as the Met Office issued weather warnings for most of Britain

Photographs show the dramatic views in Peak District forest and across the hills (pictured, snow in the area). Roads in Derbyshire and Yorkshire were closed due to the icy weather causing travel chaos

The Met Office has said the South and parts of Wales are also expecting snow today (pictured, snow in the Peak District this morning)



The Met Office has issued three days of weather warnings as Storm Jorge prepares to batter the UK. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has declined to say whether he will be visiting areas where people have been made homeless by recent floods, while visiting the headquarters of a charity for the homeless on Thursday morning

Veterinary hospital is gutted by flood water after Storm Dennis deluge and will be closed for six months 

Devastating photos show a new veterinary hospital completely destroyed by flooding.

It will take six months to get the vets back up and running after Storm Dennis caused havoc.

Valley Vets only opened in Gabalfa, Cardiff, last July. 

But the gutted pet carers have now posted photos of the recent chaos.

Staff at the hospital said everything will have to be completely replaced due to the flood damage and potential contamination

It posted on its Facebook page: ‘As you can see from the photos everything will have to be completely replaced due to the flood damage and potential contamination.

‘On a positive note we have light. The electricity has been reinstated. This means the clean up can begin. We’ve estimated a three to four week timescale for this.

‘With regards to the hospital reopening we are looking at a six month timescale, this is to get our hospital back up to full capacity.’ 

Staff at Valley Vets have been overwhelmed by the reaction but have asked for donations to be directed to a nearby charity Hope Rescue instead. 

‘There will be rain first thing in the South West and Wales, with a fairly dry start for most other places,’ Ms Salter added.

‘That rain in the far South West will move eastwards and it will be raining pretty much everywhere by lunchtime.’

Elsewhere, snow fell across parts of the Peak District. But as its gets warmer through the weekend, more rainfall is expected. 

The Met Office’s chief meteorologist, Paul Gundersen, said further flooding is possible with rain forecast to fall on already saturated ground.

Flooding along parts of the River Severn, which has reached close to its highest levels in some areas, is likely until at least Sunday, the Environment Agency said.

A severe ‘danger to life’ flood warning covering the river at the Wharfage in Ironbridge, Shropshire, remains in place, while 74 flood warnings and 118 flood alerts have been issued.

Rising waters pushed back the town’s temporary flood barriers towards a pub and other businesses, sparking fears that the defences could be fully breached.

Speaking in Ironbridge on Thursday, Environment Secretary George Eustice said the reason for his delay in visiting the town was to allow for the emergency services to ‘deal with the immediate impacts’.

Asked why Prime Minister Boris Johnson was yet to visit, the Conservative MP said: ‘When he appointed me two weeks ago he made it clear he wanted me to lead on this.

‘I have kept him regularly informed with what is happening.’

Residents in the Worcestershire town of Bewdley were forced to evacuate earlier after the river spilled over barriers at Beales Corner.

And in East Yorkshire, residents were being evacuated from the village of East Cowick after the River Aire broke its banks. 

This month is already the second wettest February on record, with the total average rainfall from February 1 to 25 measuring 179.3mm, the Met Office said.

The figure to beat is 193.4mm, which was set in February 1990.

A new veterinary hospital in Gabalfa, Cardiff, last July has been completely destroyed by the recent flooding. It will take six months to get the vets back up and running after recent weather caused havoc. 

Mr Gundersen said: ‘This weekend we’ll see another named Storm bring strong winds to parts of the UK with several wind and rain warnings in place.

‘We have issued rain warnings for parts of Wales and northern England, where rain will be heaviest and we could see 60-80mm possible over the highest ground.’


Flooding in Severn Stoke in Worcestershire on Thursday (right; and a normal view, left) after the River Severn has broken its banks

Aerial photos have shown the extent of flooding in rural communities. Pictured is the River Severn flooding into surrounding fields in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire

Flood-hit residents in Ironbridge (pictured) refused to leave their homes on Thursday amid fears over looting but praised the community for ‘looking out for each other’

An aerial view of Bewdley, Worcestershire, on Thursday also shows the amount of flooding after the River Severn broke its banks

The isolated area of Severn Stoke, which has a population of 600, had been deluged on Thursday after the river broke its banks

The flooding of Severn Stoke on Thursday came after heavy rainfall in the aftermath of Storm Dennis nearly a fortnight ago

The Republic of Ireland is expected to face the strongest and most damaging winds, Mr Gunderson said.

The storm will be followed by snow over the hills and mountains in the north of the UK and rail and hail in the south. Winds are forecast to ease slightly on Sunday.

Yellow weather warnings for rain are in place for the North West and South West of England, parts of Wales and Northern Ireland between midday on Friday and 9am on Saturday.

The Met Office has also issued a yellow wind warning from midday on Saturday covering most of England, Wales, Northern Ireland and south-west Scotland – lasting until lunchtime on Monday.

Police hunt for man spotted swimming in a flooded river in Salisbury amid concerns for his safety 

Police are trying to find a man spotted swimming in a flooded river today amid fears for his safety.

The man was pictured in the water in Salisbury in Wiltshire at approximately 9am this morning.

A man in the water in Salisbury in Wiltshire at approximately 9am this morning

A police spokesman said: ‘The man was spotted by a number of members of the public in the river opposite Wiltshire College at approximately 9am this morning.

‘The current is very strong and although we believe the man may be an experienced swimmer, we have serious concerns about his safety.

‘If you know who the man is, or if you believe the man pictured is you, please could you make contact with us via 101 or 999 immediately to confirm you are safe and well.

‘We would also like to strongly advise any other members of the public against swimming in the river at this time due to the dangerous conditions.’

Soaked riverside communities fearing the arrival of Storm Ellen have been surprised to see the third named storm in month officially designated as Storm Jorge.

Jorge’s apparent jumping of the alphabetic queue has left many asking how the naming system works.

According to the Met Office, Storm Ellen was due to be the next name for a low pressure system fulfilling their named-storm criteria – after Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis brought devastating deluges earlier this month.

But, it explained, the Spanish meteorological service – Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia (AEMET) – got their name in first when they named the weather system sweeping in off the Atlantic on Thursday.

AEMET forms part of the south-west Europe storm naming group, along with the Met Office.

The Met Office said: ‘It is convention for all other national meteorological services to then use that name when referring to the low pressure.

‘As such the system will not be named Ellen but will align with our European partners and be referred to as ‘Jorge’.

‘The fact that the system may have a different name than some expected should not influence their response.’

On Thursday, Mr Johnson declined to say whether he would visit those made homeless by recent flooding.

Speaking in central London, he instead focused on how the ‘massive issue’ of flooding ‘presents an opportunity’ for job creation. 

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has previously accused Mr Johnson of being a ‘part-time Prime Minister’ due to his absence from affected areas.

Mr Johnson said on Thursday: ‘There’s a massive issue about flood defences, and we have put £2.6 billion in and we will be investing another £4 billion.

‘This is something that is absolutely critical for our country to tackle.’

England has received over 200 per cent of its average February rainfall, according to the Environment Agency, with some areas experiencing a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours.

Toby Willison, executive director of operations at the Environment Agency, said: ‘Our operational teams continue to work night and day to protect communities alongside the River Severn, which is experiencing record levels.

‘River levels will remain exceptionally high on the Severn for some time and communities, in particular Shrewsbury, Bewdley, Bridgnorth and Ironbridge, should prepare for potentially ongoing severe flooding.’

Severn Stoke, pictured on Thursday, is home to a historic pub called The Rose And Crown in a 16th century timber building

The Worcestershire village of Severn Stoke (pictured on Thursday) has been deluged after the River Severn broke its banks following heavy rainfall

Aerial photographs show how the village of Severn Stoke in Worcestershire has been overwhelmed by flooding on Thursday

An aerial view of flooding in Severn Stoke just south of Worcester on Thursday where the River Severn has broken its banks

Why is this storm not called Ellen? 

Soaked riverside communities fearing the arrival of Storm Ellen have been surprised to see the third named storm in month officially designated as Storm Jorge.

Jorge’s apparent jumping of the alphabetic queue has left many asking how the naming system works.

According to the Met Office, Storm Ellen was due to be the next name for a low pressure system fulfilling their named-storm criteria – after Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis brought devastating deluges earlier this month.

But, it explained, the Spanish meteorological service – Agencia Estatal de Meteorologia (AEMET) – got their name in first when they named the weather system sweeping in off the Atlantic on Thursday.

AEMET forms part of the south-west Europe storm naming group, along with the Met Office.

The Met Office said: ‘It is convention for all other national meteorological services to then use that name when referring to the low pressure.

‘As such the system will not be named Ellen but will align with our European partners and be referred to as ‘Jorge’.

‘The fact that the system may have a different name than some expected should not influence their response.’

Storm Jorge is the fifth storm to hit the UK since December 6 last year and third in February,

Met Office forecaster Craig Snell said it was ‘not uncommon’ to see so many storms in such a short period of time.

Dramatic aerial photographs show how a picture postcard village in the Malvern Hills of Worcestershire has been overwhelmed by severe flooding from the River Severn with residents left homeless.

The isolated area of Severn Stoke, which has a population of about 600 people, has been deluged after the river broke its banks following heavy rainfall in the aftermath of Storm Dennis nearly a fortnight ago.

Dozens of homes, the Grade II-listed church and playing fields have been left underwater in the village which is still under an Environment Agency flood warning amid fears more rainfall could see river levels rise further. 

An EA warning for Severn Stoke yesterday said: ‘Flooding of properties and roads in and around Clifton and Severn Stoke continues. Further rainfall is forecast over the next few days, and this is likely to cause river levels to rise again.

‘We are closely monitoring the situation. Our incident response staff are checking defences. Please move possessions and valuables off the ground or to safety, and avoid contact with flood water.’

Severn Stoke is home to the Rose And Crown pub in a 16th century timber building, which was devastated during floods on Christmas Day 2012 when water levels rose to 18 inches in the bar as diners abandoned their lunches.

But the landlord and landlady Pete and Di Fryar continued living in the Grade II-listed building and were able to reopen less than a month later thanks to help from local residents and Marston’s Brewery in Wolverhampton. 

Severe flooding from the River Severn in the village of Severn Stoke on Thursday left some residents homeless

An aerial view of flooding in Severn Stoke near Worcester and Upton upon Severn on Thursday where the river has broken its banks

Dozens of homes, the Grade II-listed church and playing fields have been left underwater in the village of Severn Stoke on Thursday

The village is remote, with the local school having closed in 1969, only occasional buses operating to and from Worcester and Upton upon Severn and the nearest railway station of Great Malvern being a 20-minute drive away.

People living in riverside homes in the Shropshire town stayed put despite hearing a loud bang yesterday followed by a gushing sound as emergency flood defences that had held out for a week finally gave way to the Severn. 

February is already the second wettest on record

This month is already the second wettest February on record, according to the Met Office.

Total average rainfall across the UK from February 1 to 25 was 179.3mm (7.1 inches) – more than the 175.2mm measured in 2002, which was previously ranked as the second wettest February.

Whether this month stands a chance of becoming the wettest ever February on record is unclear, however. 

The figure to beat is 193.4mm (7.6 inches), which was set in February 1990.

Four more days of data – Feb 26 to 29 – will need to be combined with the current total of 179.3mm before the Met Office can publish a provisional figure for the entire month.

Heavy rain and strong winds are forecast to arrive in the UK as part of a weather system that has been named Storm Jorge by the Spanish meteorological service.

Rain warnings for parts of Wales and northern England have been issued, with 60mm (2.4in) to 80mm (3.1in) possible over the highest ground.

The Met Office’s rainfall data goes back to 1862. 

It shows that the lowest February rainfall on record is 9.1mm (0.36in) in 1932. 

The figure for February 1862 – the oldest available – is 32.0mm (1.26in), which currently ranks as the eleventh driest February on record.

Gareth Anderson, 50, who lives next to the Wharfage area of the town, has stayed in his home for two weeks now and said on Thursday: ‘I haven’t left. I don’t see the need to leave. The community here is one that will help each other.’

Mr Anderson added that he was concerned by reports of looters, saying: ‘A few night ago a group of young lads were hanging around asking if people were in their homes. 

‘I said every house was occupied. We all look out for each other down here. It’s crazy that a time like this people have to protect their home.’

But West Mercia Police Chief Superintendent Tom Harding said: ‘We have not received any reports of looting in Ironbridge.

‘We have officers out and about in the town throughout the day and night who are very much still responding to the flooding in the local area as well as providing reassurance and a visible presence.’

Some 35 properties have been evacuated, with police saying said ‘virtually all’ residents have now left. 

Among those staying put was Elizabeth Maiden, 88, who said from her home: ‘I’ve lived here for 80 years and it was worse than this in 1947 and 2000. Do I want to be evacuated? No. Where would I go? I can’t see any point in leaving.’

Although a severe flooding, danger to life warning is still in place for the River Severn at the Wharfage in Ironbridge, the water level is reducing. The Environment Agency revealed the gauge for Buildwas at 6pm on Thursday was 5.82m and falling. A peak level of 6.79m occurred at 9am on Wednesday morning. 

Snow also affected Britain on Thursday, and 0.6in (15mm) of rain fell on heavily saturated areas, before a further 2.4in (60mm) across Friday and Saturday in Wales and northern England – when 70mph winds are also expected. 

West Mercia Police told people in the Wharfage area of Ironbridge to leave their homes and businesses and said the force’s presence on the ground will ‘continue for the next ten days’ before things get back to normal.

Water is seen extremely close to homes and businesses where the River Severn and River Avon converge near Tewkesbury (pictured on Thursday)

A mobile home park is seen flooded after the River Severn broke its banks during the floods (pictured on Thursday)

Aerial shots show the damage done to Worcester by the heavy rain and flooding (pictured on Thursday)

An image shows where the River Severn and River Avon converge near Tewkesbury and have flooded into fields (pictured on Thursday)

Fire crews arrived on Thursday in Snaith, East Riding of Yorkshire, where locals have criticised the lack of help they have received (pictured on Thursday)

Members of the coastguard in Snaith, East Riding of Yorkshire, arrive to help communities affected by flooding on Thursday

People survey flooding in Snaith, East Yorkshire, on Thursday where locals have criticised the lack of help they have received

Members of the fire brigade in boats get through floodwater in Snaith, East Riding of Yorkshire, on Thursday afternoon

A woman has her door protected with sandbags in Snaith, East Riding of Yorkshire, Thursday afternoon

Members of the fire brigade in boats get through floodwater in Snaith, East Riding of Yorkshire, Thursday afternoon

A road snakes its way through floodwater after the River Severn has broken its banks in Worcestershire (pictured on Thursday)

Rows of trees are seen among the burst River Severn in Worcester on Thursday

Blue barriers are seen along the river in Ironbridge, Shropshire, where the River Severn has flooded (pictured on Thursday)

The water level in Bewdley, Worcester, almost covers the arches of a bridge and has flooded grass around the bank (pictured on Thursday)

Pub owner is evacuated to a hotel after floodwater gushes into her business 

A pub owner enjoyed some respite from the flooding on Thursday with a fish and chips lunch after being evacuated to a hotel when her business was deluged.

Jennifer Alexander is staying at the evacuation centre of the Valley Hotel in Ironbridge after her pub, The Boat Inn, was flooded in nearby Jackfield.

Jennifer Alexandra and Alan Cambridge enjoy their lunch at the Valley Hotel near Ironbridge on Thursday after being evacuated

She woke up in the early hours of Sunday to see water was inside the pub, and told her husband they had to leave immediately. 

Ms Alexander said: ‘At Sunday at 2.40am I woke up and saw the water was in the pub. I woke my husband up and said we need to get out now.

‘It’s quite stressful. We flood regularly so we’ve done this many times before. It’s the same as the floods of 2000. 

‘We don’t have any money coming in. We thought we had Monday morning to do some last minute preparations. It wasn’t scary as such, just acceptance that here we go again.’

Deputy Chief Constable Julian Moss said: ‘We are monitoring closely with colleagues at the Environment Agency, and an operational plan is in place with Shropshire Fire and Rescue should it be required.’  

Flooding along parts of the swollen Severn, which is now at or close to all-time high levels, is likely until at least Sunday, the Environment Agency said. 

A severe flood warning for the river at Wharfage remained in place on Thursday.  

Among those staying put in Ironbridge on Thursday was Sarah Morris, 35, who runs Ironbridge Fine Art and last night slept in the back of her car to man her flood pumps.

She said: ‘We’re trying to deal with it in the best way we can. The water has gone down but the Environment Agency are saying it will peak again so we can’t clean up. 

‘Last night we slept in the car to make sure the pumps could keep going. We’ve seen quite a few people moving around and we’re concerned about our stuff.’

Evacuees from the Wharfage area of Ironbridge have been moved to the town’s Valley Hotel and are in high spirits. 

Sean Osborne, 66, has lived on the Wharfage for the last decade and spent last night in the hotel.

His house is directly opposite the flood barrier. He said: ‘The barrier is tried and tested but like anything no one knows what to expect. For me it wasn’t scary. I had confidence in the barrier.

‘I went outside and went up to the railings and looked over and saw the power of the water, it was amazing. 

‘If there had been a problem with the barrier it would have been like a tsunami, that would have been the effect.’

‘I was quite happy to stay there and some of my neighbours were the same. I got a call at 3am from the Environment Agency and then some calls from the council.

‘I had eight calls in total saying the river would peak imminently. I thought I’d stay so I could monitor what was going on. I wouldn’t drown because I’d go upstairs, that was the calculated risk.

‘But they still wanted people to leave so I said would you be happy if I left and they said yes. I said alright then, I’d go if it keeps them happy, why should I mess things up? I don’t know when we’ll be able to go back.’

Residents in Ironbridge (pictured on Thursday) had said they were worried about looting but West Mercia Police Chief Superintendent Tom Harding said: ‘We have not received any reports of looting in Ironbridge’

Dozens of fields are seen waterlogged in Twekesbury where water from the River Severn has flooded into them (pictured on Thursday)

An aerial view of Ironbridge, in Shropshire, is seen with flood defences lining some of the river bank (pictured on Thursday)

Homes are seen flooded by the River Severn in Ironbridge on Thursday

(From left) Jennifer Alexandra, Alan Cambridge and Paul Charlesworth enjoy their lunch at the Valley Hotel near Ironbridge after being evacuated because of flooding from their homes in the nearby village of Jackfield, Shropshire (pictured on Thursday)


Brooke Evans, 26, (left) owns a hair salon on Dale End close to the Wharfage. She has spent close to two weeks sleeping in the salon manning the water pumps. While Jennifer Alexander (right) has been evacuated and told how her pub, the Boat Inn, was flooded early on Sunday morning (both are pictured on Thursday)

Gareth Anderson, 50, who lives next to the Wharfage area of the town, has stayed in his home for two weeks now and said on Thursday: ‘I haven’t left. I don’t see the need to leave’ (pictured on Thursday)

Flood barriers in Ironbridge, Shropshire, are pictured Thursday morning – one day after residents were told to leave their homes

Flooded properties are seen beside the River Severn in Ironbridge on Thursday after the river burst its banks in the area

Floode properties in the Shropshire town of Ironbridge on Thursday after temporary flood barriers were overwhelmed by water

Flooding in Ironbridge, Shropshire, on Thursday as residents in riverside properties in the area have been told to leave their homes

Environment Secretary George Eustice speaks with Environment Agency manager Chris Bainger and a local resident during a visit to Ironbridge in Shropshire on Thursday

Flood barriers in Ironbridge, Shropshire, were pictured on Thursday after being pushed back – although they are still holding up

The swollen River Severn gushes under the Iron Bridge in the Shropshire town on Thursday as residents were told to evacuate

Ambulances and police vehicles in Ironbridge, Shropshire, on Thursday after residents in the area were told to leave their homes

Emergency services workers monitor the flooding in Ironbridge on Thursday after temporary flood barriers were overwhelmed

Evacuees from the Wharfage area of Ironbridge have been moved to the town’s Valley Hotel (pictured on Thursday)

Environment Secretary George Eustice views a screen showing drone camera images of flood defences in Ironbridge on Thursday

People stand on the Iron Bridge in the Shropshire town on Thursday after residents in riverside properties were told to evacuate

Environment Secretary George Eustice goes to Ironbridge to see flooding for himself… but still no sign of Boris

Environment Secretary George Eustice visited Ironbridge to see the flooding for himself on Thursday as Boris Johnson continued to face criticism over his failure to visit flood-hit communities.

He spoke with Environment Agency manager Chris Bainger and local residents during a visit to the Shropshire town on Thursday afternoon, a day after flood barriers buckled due to the weight of water in the River Severn

During the visit Mr Eustice said the Prime Minister had ‘made it clear he wanted me to lead on this’. 

Environment Secretary George Eustice is accompanied by a member of the Environment Agency in Ironbridge on Thursday

Mr Eustice, who has said the Prime Minister’s presence on the ground would not have had made any difference to the response to the crisis, was shown drone camera images of flood defences during his trip.

Telford MP Lucy Allan thanked him for visiting Ironbridge on Twitter, writing: ‘It meant a lot that you were there.’

It comes after he announced yesterday that farmers will be paid to sacrifice their farmland when rivers flood, which will allow fields to act as natural defences to protect homes.

Other measures would include planting more trees, restoring peat bogs and reintroducing beavers to create natural dams.

He said that natural defences would be key as climate change leads to increased flooding. 

But he rejected calls for a public inquiry into Government handling of the floods, with Mr Johnson facing significant criticism for not visiting the affected communities.

Jennifer Alexander, owner of the Boat Inn, who has also been evacuated, said: ‘At Sunday at 2.40am I woke up and saw the water was in the pub. I woke my husband up and said we need to get out now.

‘It’s quite stressful. We flood regularly so we’ve done this many times before. It’s the same as the floods of 2000. We don’t have any money coming in. 

‘We thought we had Monday morning to do some last minute preparations. It wasn’t scary as such, just acceptance that here we go again.’

And Chris Harrison, 47, who owns the Dale End café, said: ‘I’m angry. We haven’t finished working the cost of this yet but on equipment alone it’s probably £6,000 in damage. This is a community cafe, not a tourist cafe. People turned up at 3am to help us.’

Brooke Evans, 26, owns a hair salon on Dale End close to the Wharfage. She has spent close to two weeks sleeping in the salon manning the water pumps.

She said: ‘We’ve survived with people being in high spirits. As a business it’s been a bit difficult but no one has died. 

‘If we had left it would have meant no one would have been here to man the pumps and get the water out.’

The Environment Agency said buckled temporary flood defences were likely to be inspected – with the prospect of 650ft (200m) of spare barrier equipment being used to realign or reinforce any damaged sections.

Speaking at Ironbridge, EA environment manager Marc Lidderth said: ‘They did become compromised in some parts but they have stayed together and have held the vast majority of that floodwater away from the properties. 

‘To help with our assessment of the barriers we need the water levels to obviously drop to a certain level which makes it safe for our operatives. We’re expecting that to be hopefully Friday.’ 

The River Severn reached its highest ever level of 5.77m (19ft) on Thursday after another night of heavy rain.

Dave Throup, Environment Agency manager for Herefordshire and Worcestershire, said 500 tonnes of water – the equivalent to six HGVs – was flowing through the city of Worcester every second.

And Hereford and Worcester Fire Service revealed on Thursday that since Storm Dennis hit on 15 February, their crews had rescued 185 people, 55 sheep, 19 dogs, 10 cats, one pony, one parrot and a snake because of flooding.

The service has also assisted 204 people to leave their homes, reports the BBC.

Tewkesbury Abbey is seen behind a children’s playground which is surrounded by water on Thursday

Water from the River Severn and River Avon surrounds Tewkesbury Abbey and other houses 

A playground sits partially submerged in floodwater in Tewkesbury on Thursday as the Gloucestershireas town suffers flooding

Properties back onto floodwater in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, on Thursday as the town continues to face flooding

A playground sits partially submerged in floodwater in Tewkesbury on Thursday as flooding misery continues in England

Swings at a playground sit partially submerged in floodwater in Tewkesbury Thursday afternoon as the town suffers flooding

A vehicle sits just above the floodwater level in Tewkesbury Thursday afternoon as the town faces a continued flooding risk

Prime Minister hails help for flood victims but declines to confirm visit to affected areas 

Boris Johnson has declined to say whether he will visit areas where people have been made homeless by recent floods – while he toured the headquarters of a charity for the homeless.

Speaking at The Connection at St Martin’s in central London, the Prime Minister instead focused on how the ‘massive issue’ of flooding ‘presents an opportunity’ for job creation.

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures during a visit to the Connection homelessness centre in London on Thursday

Mr Johnson has been criticised for failing to visit flood-hit zones in Worcestershire and Shropshire, where residents have been forced to evacuate their homes.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has previously accused Mr Johnson of being a ‘part-time Prime Minister’ due to his absence in affected areas.

Speaking on Thursday, Mr Johnson said: ‘There’s a massive issue about flood defences, and we have put £2.6 billion in and we will be investing another £4 billion.

‘This is something that is absolutely critical for our country to tackle.

‘I think it also presents an opportunity, because in the whole business of green technology flood defences, planting trees, all the ways in which we are going to insulate our country against flooding, there are opportunities for job creation as well.

‘We have a fantastic system called cabinet government, and we have been working around the clock since these last floods really began.

‘This latest spate, to deal with them we mobilised the bell-wind scheme, £5,000 if they have suffered particular damage.

‘Businesses get £2,500 to get them back on their feet.’

Housing Minister Robert Jenrick, who visited the homelessness charity alongside the Prime Minister, said Mr Johnson is ‘very much in control’ of the flooding.

Aerial photographs of the city show Worcestershire Country Cricket ground and several rugby and football pitches flooded. 

Only the tops of goal posts were visible on several pitches near the Severn illustrating the depth of the water.

Ade Cartwright, 50, and his family were forced to leave their home when it became apparent they would flood again. 

He said: ‘My wife and I left, along with most of the neighbours. The city council have put us up in the Fownes Hotel.

‘We are managing but it is difficult living in one room together, 24 hours a day. Last weekend it came into the house, luckily we were prepared, once the water receded we managed to clear it up with a few friends within four hours.

‘Now it has happened again we have decided to leave. We can’t do anything until the levels drop and I don’t envisage that happening until the weekend.’

The floodwater is also creeping closer to homes on a road where a large number of elderly people live. Kim Weston said she feared for her parents’ wellbeing as water threatened to consume the elderly couple’s home.

She said: ‘The water is dangerously close to the properties, it has never been this close before. I am very concerned that my parents’ house will flood. The road has been closed but cars continue to speed down it.

‘It is causing the water to ripple and splash up the brickwork. I wish they would put a proper blockade to stop people driving through the floodwater. It is making matters worse.

‘We have received no official advice about what to do in this situation, I feel like we have been left to fend for ourselves a bit. It is really disappointing.

‘I managed to get hold of the city council and asked for some sandbags only to find out they don’t provide them. If we do flood we have no precautions in place. It is a very poor show.’

Worcester City Council said they did not provide sandbags because they were not effective in protecting against floods and could become contaminated by unhygienic floodwater.

A spokesman said: ‘Our recommended approach for flood alleviation is through alterations to homes such as raising floors and the installation of barriers.

‘Financial support for these measures is potentially available through the Flood Support Funding scheme.’ 

The M5 crossing the River Avon, with Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire (top left) and the Severn branching off to the right, on Thursday

An aerial view of Upton upon Severn in Worcestershire on Thursday which has been completely surrounded by water

A warning sign is surrounded by water as floodwaters persist in the centre of Worcester on Thursday afternoon

Floodwaters persist in the centre of Worcester city centre on Thursday afternoon after the River Severn burst its banks

A car is surrounded by water amid severe flooding in the city centre of Worcester on Thursday afternoon

Floodwaters persist in the centre of Worcester after the River Severn burst its banks and caused chaos

Floodwaters persist in the centre of Worcester on Thursday, with forecasters predicting more rain and 70mph winds this weekend

A tree is surrounded by floodwaters in the centre of Worcester Thursday afternoon, with more severe weather on the way

Flood water surrounds Worcester city centre on Thursday as residents in riverside properties in the area have been told to leave

Flood water surrounds Worcester city centre on Thursday, as residents in riverside properties near the Severn have been evacuated

Flooding has deluged Worcestershire County Cricket Club after the River Severn burst its banks. The ground is pictured on Thursday

Flood water surrounded Worcester on Thursday as residents in riverside properties in the area have been told to leave their homes

An aerial view of flooding in Worcester on Thursday where the River Severn has broken its banks and caused chaos

A McDonald’s restaurant and shopping centre were surrounded by water in Worcester city centre Thursday morning

People in the Midlands have been told to prepare for another ten days of difficult conditions. Worcester is pictured on Thursday

New Road cricket ground had been left underwater in Worcester on Thursday after the River Severn broke its banks

An aerial view of flooding in Worcester on Thursday after the River Severn burst its banks and caused chaos in the city

An aerial view of flooding in Worcester on Thursday as severe weather continues to affect parts of Britain 

Buildings have been left half-submerged in Worcester with the severe flooding causing chaos around the city

** Have you taken any photographs of flooding where you are? Email them to [email protected] ** 

England has received more than 200 per cent of its average February rainfall, according to the EA, with some areas experiencing a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours. 

An aerial view of flooding in Worcester on Thursday morning where the River Severn has broken its banks

Homes in parts of Worcestershire have been evacuated after water started pouring over defences. Worcester is seen on Thursday

An aerial view of flooding in Worcester on Thursday as people were told to prepare for another ten days of difficult conditions

A McDonald’s in Worcester city centre has been overwhelmed with flooding on Thursday with the local roads also underwater

But the Prime Minister said he was ‘proud’ of the response by ministers following the recent storms and defended the Government’s investment in flood defences.  

Speaking at The Connection in London on Thursday, Mr Johnson focused on how the ‘massive issue’ of flooding ‘presents an opportunity’ for job creation.

He said: ‘There’s a massive issue about flood defences, and we have put £2.6billion in and we will be investing another £4billion. This is something that is absolutely critical for our country to tackle.

‘I think it also presents an opportunity, because in the whole business of green technology flood defences, planting trees, all the ways in which we are going to insulate our country against flooding, there are opportunities for job creation as well.’

Operational teams have put up more than 3.7miles (6km) of temporary flood barriers across the country and flood defences have protected more than 34,184 properties over the last week. 

Mr Johnson was accused by Labour leader Mr Corbyn of being a ‘part time Prime Minister’ after failing to visit areas hit by the floods.

However Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick said such visits were often a ‘distraction’ which took away valuable resources from the emergency services.

‘He is very much in control of events. Over 100 of my constituents were flooded two weeks ago. What they are very concerned to see is action. They want to see more funding for flood defences,’ he told Sky News. 

‘They are pleased that the Government has activated quite a substantial package of financial support. Those are the really meaningful things which personally I think are more important than the distraction of the Prime Minister turning up in an emergency situation.’ 

** Have you taken any photographs of flooding where you are? Email them to [email protected] ** 

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