Communities brought to their knees by flooding face further misery as Britain heads for its wettest February in 30 years, with more rain, wind and snow set to hit nationwide.
The Met Office has warned a month’s worth of rain (2.4in) could fall across an already soaked South Wales today as yet another wave of torrential rain moves over the country from the south west.
Forecasters said this will give way to more showery weather as the day progresses but the storm will sweep in again on Sunday night, bringing rain and winds of up to 70mph to many areas and snow to parts of Scotland and northern England on Monday.
The bleak outlook follows more than a fortnight of downpours and flooding that started with Storm Ciara, continued with Storm Dennis and then kept going with the storms over the weekend.
Already an average 5.5in of rain has fallen across the UK so far this month but experts fear the figure could surpass the second highest record of 6.6in, which was set in 2014.
With vast swathes of South Wales and central and northern England still recovering from the impact of Storms Ciara and Dennis, heavy showers and high winds have brought more flooding and warnings of worse to come. Pictured: flooded roads in Upton-upon-Severn on Saturday
One cyclist was less fortunate, trudging through floodwaters in North Wales yesterday as the river’s banks burst once again
A three-day weather forecast shows some sunny spells on Sunday, but mainly rain, cloud, wind and snow nationwide
According to Met Office records, the wettest ever February was in 1990 with an average rainfall of 7.6in.
While the extreme weather should settle down over Tuesday and Wednesday, the Met Office said further heavy rain is expected later in the week.
The number of flood warnings in force in England dropped slightly on Saturday afternoon as the rain relented in many areas – albeit with gale-force winds continuing in the north.
On Saturday night, five flood warnings remained in force across Wales – mainly on the River Severn and River Dee – with 23 flood alerts.
In England, the two severe flood warnings on the River Lugg, in Herefordshire, were downgraded but 74 flood warnings and 170 flood alerts remained in place.
The Met Office said the overnight band of rain would give way to more showery weather during Sunday.
But it warned the weather system was due to pivot back on Sunday night, bringing widespread rain and wind for many parts, with snow over central and southern Scotland and the hills of the north Pennines bringing a grim start to Monday.
A yellow weather warning for heavy rain has been issued for 3am to 3pm on Monday for the north of England.
There is also a yellow warning for snow covering much of central and southern Scotland on Monday.
Forecasters said snow could also fall on higher ground in northernmost areas of England.
Heavy rain, strong winds and flooding caused by Storm Dennis has wreaked havoc with homeowners and commuters this week, but it has also affected revellers trying to enjoy a night out in Leeds on Saturday
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for heavy rain across already flood-hit South Wales from 10pm on Saturday night to 11am on Sunday morning. There is also a warning in place for the Scottish Highlands for snow and ice until 10am on Sunday (right). It has issued a rain yellow weather warning for the North West of England from 3am on Monday to 3pm. There is also a wind warning in place for Northern Ireland and the north of Scotland from 9am on Monday to 11.59pm. Snow warnings are in place for Scotland from 6am on Monday to 9pm (left)
Dan Suri, chief forecaster at the Met Office, said: ‘A relatively deep area of low-pressure system on Monday provides a continuation of the extremely unsettled period the UK has endured.
‘Despite reports to the contrary, this system hasn’t been named, and there is no plan to do so currently, despite some speculation on social media.
‘With further rain in the forecast over the coming days, additional rainfall could create further challenges as river catchments are more likely to respond to extra rainfall more quickly.
‘Flooding, especially in areas already heavily affected, remains a possibility.’
Scott Squires, duty tactical manager for Natural Resources Wales, said: ‘As the floodwaters recede and communities start to get back on their feet, we’ll continue to support local authorities and emergency service in these affected areas.
‘Over the coming days our teams will be checking for any signs of damage to our flood defences, and removing blockages and debris which has built up in culverts and drainage grids etc.’
There was further flooding on Friday night and Saturday morning on the southern edge of the Yorkshire Dales.
The village of Horton-in-Ribblesdale was cut off by rising water for six hours and there were road closures and further flooding along the Otley-Ilkley-Skipton corridor, north of Bradford.
Thomas Millman, 57, landlord of the Crown pub in Horton-in-Ribblesdale, said it was the worst flooding he had seen in 40 years in the village.
‘It swept in very, very quickly and I was forced to shut the pub at 9pm on Friday. We put sandbags outside, which has fortunately stopped it flooding.
‘But some people haven’t been so lucky. The water was waist high on the main road and I know lots of people had to leave their homes. This is the third weekend on the trot it’s been this bad. I don’t remember weather like this.’
North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said they had to rescue four people from a stranded car in Skipton and two horses stuck in floodwater nearby.
Lurking in watery Worcester … it’s a real crocodile shock!
When your restaurant’s beset with floods, could things really get any worse? Only if you spot a crocodile lurking in the encroaching waters.
Richard Hill, manager of Browns at the Quay in Worcester, got a shock when he spotted the creature outside his front windows yesterday.
At first, he worried the fearsome beast had escaped from a nearby safari park but fortunately soon realised it was a fibreglass model that had been swept up in the storm.
Richard Hill, manager of Browns at the Quay in Worcester, got a shock when he spotted the creature outside his front windows yesterday
At first, he worried the fearsome beast had escaped from a nearby safari park but fortunately soon realised it was a fibreglass model that had been swept up in the storm
‘All the staff had a bit of a moment, when we first spotted it at about eight this morning,’ Mr Hill said.
‘We were taken aback, to say the least, but once we realised it was fake, it turned into the highlight of the day.’