Flood threat to last for ‘two weeks’

Aerial photograph of Billing Aquadrome following floods.
Aerial photograph of Billing Aquadrome following floods.
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The risk of flooding is likely to threaten homes in parts of Northampton for the next two weeks, despite water levels on the River Nene starting to “plateau”.

Flood warnings remain in place across the county, experts have said, following “one of the most significant flooding events in recent national history”.

Yesterday, officials said Northamptonshire had already seen “twice the monthly average of rain since last Wednesday”.

Officers from the Environment Agency say water levels are now beginning to plateau on the River Nene, however, flooding will remain a “significant risk” for the next fortnight.

Norman Robinson, Environment Agency manager, said: “While the rain is easing, the river levels remain very high and the ground is completely saturated. The levels are not expected to drop within the next week, possibly two, with further rain likely to cause greater risk of further flooding.”

“Flood warnings remain in place at Billing Aquadrome, Cogenhoe Mill and along the Nene Valley towards Peterborough. We are asking that everyone remain vigilant and patient whilst water drains out of the county.”

He added: “Our thoughts go out to those who have been affected.

“All of our emergency plans and flood defences have worked and the vast majority of Northamptonshire has not been affected by one of the most significant flooding events in recent national history.”

Luke Hodson, water incident manager at Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We have attended a number of incidents over the last week and in doing so have tested our multi-agency plans and responses and it has been pleasing to see it has worked.

“I urge families to be wary over the coming week as, although the water may look benign, the danger is still present and children and pets must be supervised when near any flood waters.

“Although we are equipped with state of the art water rescue equipment, I hope people can appreciate the continuing risk and that we do not want to deploy any of this kit.”

Peter Angelides of Billing Aquadrome and Cogenhoe Caravan Park said it was likely to take a “few days” to get the parks clear.

He said: “We have been working hard with the Environment Agency and emergency services since flooding began last Thursday. Both parks are still flooded.

“We have taken a lot of water onto the sites over the past few days and have tried to minimise the damage to the parks. Having been flooded, once the water goes it will take us a few days to clean the site and get sewage, electricity and water supplies back to normal.”

“We have arranged for people to get emergency access to the site between 10am and 2pm throughout the week. This needs to be supervised access as there is still a significant amount of water on the site. As the flood warning is still in place, with the amount of water on the site and the time it will take to clear up, we may need to remain closed until next week. A further update will be made available on our website on Friday at 11am.”