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UK weather: Britain is bracing for 60mph winds and torrential rain this week

Storm Francis has struck Britain with full force with London drivers struggling through flash floods as 76mph winds and torrential rain sweep in overnight. 

More than a month’s worth of rain is anticipated as summer ends with a distinctly autumnal feel and forecasters warn of further travel chaos and power cuts. 

Motorists in the capital city barely made it through waterlogged roads as drains struggled to clear the rain quickly enough.  

Drivers swerved into the paths of oncoming traffic in a desperate bid to avoid flooded roads as blustering winds blasted torrential rain across windscreens.   

One user in a high-rise building filmed lashings of rain pelting below as she said: ‘This is mother nature for us’. 

The Met Office issued a wind warning for 24 hours from 9am tomorrow for most of England and Wales, with the strongest gusts on coasts and hills as unsettled weather continues to arrive from the Atlantic. 

A 30-hour alert for rain will also begin at midnight tonight across Northern Ireland, central Scotland, North West England and North Wales – with up to 3.5in (90mm) expected to fall, above the August average of 2.8in (70mm).

The spell of strong winds will develop across the South West of England and Wales tomorrow morning, before spreading east across other parts of England and Wales overnight, clearing into the North Sea on Wednesday. 

The rain warning included the threat of communities being cut off, spray leading to road closures, possible train or bus delays, flooding damaging buildings and fast flowing or deep floodwater ‘causing a danger to life’. 

Londoners took to Twitter and shared photographs of the devastation caused by the floods. 

Nathan O’Connor, who lives on the 14th floor of an apartment block, said three inches of water flooded his balcony and burst through into the sitting room.

One Twitter user said the torrential rain caused a flood on his balcony that seeped into his sitting room

One Twitter user said the torrential rain caused a flood on his balcony that seeped into his sitting room

Downpours caused a 'biblical' amount of rain to flood roads across the capital city

Downpours caused a ‘biblical’ amount of rain to flood roads across the capital city

Another posted a picture that showed a park in south west London almost entirely flooded with gallons of water.

Another posted a picture that showed a park in south west London almost entirely flooded with gallons of water.

Another posted a picture that showed a park in south west London almost entirely flooded with gallons of water.

Others begged for a return of last week’s heatwave. Olivia-Anne Cleary said: ‘This monsoon-type downpour in South London is not working for me’ while another user described the downpour as ‘biblical’.  

The gloomy forecast is bad news for families enjoying a staycation in Britain in the last weeks of the summer holidays, following the cancellation of thousands of foreign trips due to coronavirus travel restrictions. It comes as temperatures fell below zero overnight, with -0.4C (31.3F) at Loch Glascarnoch in the Scottish Highlands.

It follows a similar period of unseasonable weather towards the end of last week, coinciding with the arrival of Storm Ellen, which saw 15-year-old Nicola Williams swept to her death in the Rhymney River in Llanrumney, Cardiff, and a 50-year-old holidaymaker die in the sea near Helston, west Cornwall, after getting into difficulties. 

Also last week a child died in Bobbing, Kent, on Friday after being struck by a tree that was toppled by strong winds while another was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries as Storm Ellen battered the country. Elsewhere, a man died and a woman was injured after neighbour’s chimney fell onto their house in Bradford yesterday. 

Clouds form over the Solent in Portsmouth as Britain braces for another battering when Storm Francis sweeps in with 70mph gales and torrential rain from around midnight tonight

Clouds form over the Solent in Portsmouth as Britain braces for another battering when Storm Francis sweeps in with 70mph gales and torrential rain from around midnight tonight

Huge waves strike into the Cornish port town of Porthleven this morning with more strong winds on the way tomorrow

Huge waves strike into the Cornish port town of Porthleven this morning with more strong winds on the way tomorrow 

Wild waves leash the seafront at Seaburn in Sunderland today as Britain's next named storm 'Francis' approaches just three days after Storm Ellen trampled the country, leaving four dead

Wild waves leash the seafront at Seaburn in Sunderland today as Britain’s next named storm ‘Francis’ approaches just three days after Storm Ellen trampled the country, leaving four dead 

Met Office chief meteorologist Andy Page said: ‘The UK is in for another unseasonably wet and windy spell with Storm Francis arriving on Tuesday. There will be strong winds and heavy rain, especially in the west of the UK. 

‘A number of severe weather warnings have been issued and these warnings can be updated regularly so please keep up to date with the latest Met Office forecast.’

The Met Office issued a wind warning from 9am tomorrow and a rain warning from midnight tonight for parts of Britain

With today looking grey and overcast, Met Office forecaster Craig Snell said: ‘This sort of weather pattern is more common in the autumn time, but as we saw from the storms last week we can get it at this time of year as well.

‘On Tuesday and Wednesday we may see gusts reach up to 60mph along the coast. This is likely to be accompanied by heavy rain which may well cause some transport delays.

‘It’s likely to slowly dry up on Wednesday – but this will only be a brief respite before another area of low pressure comes in for Thursday and Friday. It won’t be quite as windy but it will be wet.’

Next week’s bank holiday is forecast to bring more settled weather, but – in a blow to any thoughts of a fiery end to the barbecue summer – Mr Snell said: ‘There’s unlikely to be any heat building.’

There were transport issues yesterday when a landslide closed the railway line between Glasgow and Edinburgh at Shotts in Lanarkshire. Passengers were encouraged to use alternative services to and from Glasgow Queen Street.

Meanwhile in Bradford, West Yorkshire, a 47-year-old man died yesterday when a chimney on his next door neighbour’s house collapsed and fell through his bedroom roof.

A woman aged 28, who was asleep next to him, had a remarkable escape and was taken to hospital with serious but non-life threatening injuries. 

Onlookers watch this morning from behind a stone wall as huge waves crash into Porthleven harbour in Cornwall

Onlookers watch this morning from behind a stone wall as huge waves crash into Porthleven harbour in Cornwall 

Wild waves leash the seafront at Seaburn in Sunderland today as further high winds whip up the water in the North of England

Wild waves leash the seafront at Seaburn in Sunderland today as further high winds whip up the water in the North of England

Heavy rain tomorrow

More downpours on Wednesday

A spell of strong winds will develop across the South West of England and Wales tomorrow morning (left), before spreading east across other parts of England and Wales overnight, clearing into the North Sea on Wednesday (right)

The chimney pot, bricks and slates from the roof of the two-storey cottage next door collapsed suddenly at 5am yesterday and smashed through the bungalow roof next door causing devastating damage.

Recent windy weather may have weakened the chimney structure and locals said it had been wet and windy again on Saturday night. The debris fell straight into the master bedroom.

The dead man is believed to have been killed instantly and pronounced dead at the scene Emergency services rushed to the scene to find a chaotic scene with piles of rubble and major damage to the two adjoining properties.

Nicola Maxey, meteorologist for the Met Office, added: ‘Since 2015 when we started naming storms, we have never had to name a storm in August – and now we’ve had two in a few days.

‘There are a lot of people on holiday in the UK at the moment, going camping and on walking breaks, many in coastal locations where the winds are likely to be stronger, so it is worth checking on the Met Office website ahead of time.’

Meanwhile holidaymakers and sunbathers flocked to the beach at the seaside resort of Lyme Regis in Dorset to soak up the 70F sun this afternoon.

Meanwhile holidaymakers and sunbathers flocked to the beach at the seaside resort of Lyme Regis in Dorset to soak up the 70F sun this afternoon.

A paddleboarder enjoys the sun on the River Wharfe near Otley in West Yorkshire today as the country braces itself for Storm Francis

A paddleboarder enjoys the sun on the River Wharfe near Otley in West Yorkshire today as the country braces itself for Storm Francis

Despite the looming Storm Francis, and high winds, hundreds enjoyed the sun on Lyme Regis beach in Dorset today

Despite the looming Storm Francis, and high winds, hundreds enjoyed the sun on Lyme Regis beach in Dorset today

A woman wearing a face mask walking along the Millennium Bridge in London in the sunshine today

A woman wearing a face mask walking along the Millennium Bridge in London in the sunshine today

A man paddles boards with a dog on the Solent in Portsmouth. The UK has been braced to expect an "unseasonably wet and windy spell", as Storm Francis reaches the west of England from the early hours of Tuesday

A man paddles boards with a dog on the Solent in Portsmouth. The UK has been braced to expect an ‘unseasonably wet and windy spell’, as Storm Francis reaches the west of England from the early hours of Tuesday

People out punting on the river Cam in Cambridge making the most of the good weather before it turns wet for the rest of the week

People out punting on the river Cam in Cambridge making the most of the good weather before it turns wet for the rest of the week

No new storm is currently forecast this month, meaning the next storm will begin with ‘A’ rather than ‘G’, as the storm-naming calendar resets on September 1. 

Homes had been left without power and roads closed as Storm Ellen – the first named storm during the summer holidays – hit Britain last week.

Four people died, including a man and two children aged 14 and six when their car skidded off the road and plunged into a lake in torrential rain in County Donegal.

In Kent, police said they were called to Parsonage Lane, a narrow rural road that runs through wheat fields, to reports children had been injured shortly after midday on Friday.

A spokesman said one child was declared dead at the scene and the other was airlifted to a London hospital with serious injuries. Shocked locals suggested it was likely to be a ‘freak accident’.

A man has died and a woman injured after neighbour's chimney fell onto their house in Bradford, West Yorkshire, yesterday

A man has died and a woman injured after neighbour’s chimney fell onto their house in Bradford, West Yorkshire, yesterday

The man died in Bradford yesterday when a chimney on his next door neighbour's house collapsed and fell through his roof

The man died in Bradford yesterday when a chimney on his next door neighbour’s house collapsed and fell through his roof 

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