Bord Foren


Heavy rain forecast in areas hit by Storm Babet flooding, Met Office warns

England should brace for heavy downpours in areas already suffering flooding caused by Storm Babet, forecasters warned on Monday, as Scotland’s first minister pledged to support a devastated Angus town.

The Met Office issued yellow weather warnings for heavy rain between 3am and 4pm on Tuesday, which could lead to a further deluge in the east Midlands, including in Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire; much of Yorkshire, including Sheffield, Leeds and York; and Humberside.

Some areas in the Midlands will see up to 50mm (2in) of rain falling within two to three hours, the forecaster said.

A yellow weather warning has also been issued for parts of south-west Wales, where heavy rain is predicted from 5pm on Monday until just before midnight.

At least five people had died as a result of the storm as of Monday evening, with police recovering the body of a man reported to have been trapped in a vehicle in flood water near Marykirk, Aberdeenshire.

The announcement came shortly after a van driver who was killed on Thursday by a falling tree near Forfar was named as John Gillan, 56, from Arbroath.

In a statement released through police, his family said: “We are devastated by the loss of John and the circumstances in which he died.

“John was a loving husband to Gaynor, dad to Marc, father-in-law to Natasha, and granddad to Reygan and Finley. He was also a loving son to John and Moira, brother to Wendy and a loving uncle, son-in-law and brother-in-law. John will be deeply missed by us all.”

On Sunday, a woman washed away in Glenesk was named as Wendy Taylor, 57, described by her family as a “beloved wife, best friend and soulmate … mother and granny”.

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In England, an 83-year-old Derbyshire woman, Maureen Gilbert, and a Shropshire man in his 60s have died. Four other people have died in traffic accidents in flood-hit areas, although it is uncertain whether Babet was a direct cause.

Humza Yousaf promised the Scottish government would consider emergency funding to help the town of Brechin recover from the storm, but said it was unclear what kind of help was needed.

Yousaf visited on Monday, three days after hundreds of homes in the town in Angus were inundated when the South Esk river broke through flood defences, which had been designed for a one in 200 year flooding event.

Numerous roads in the area, including the A90 trunk road between Dundee and Stonehaven, remained closed on Monday.

Local councillors said some residents may never be able to return to their homes, with others unlikely to return before Christmas. Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland, Gavin Nicol, a Conservative councillor, said: “Angus council, unfortunately, does not have the resources to do the job it needs to to protect the residents.

“We really need finance from the Scottish government in order to protect our residents, to rehome them. Some will be out for months, if not permanently.”

Yousaf said detailed assessments were needed before it would be clear whether emergency funding was required. Scottish ministers could approach the UK government for additional support, he said.

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Flooding has already caused travel chaos across Britain’s rail networks, and the Met Office advised that flooding could lead to dangerous driving conditions and road closures.

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On Sunday, Nottinghamshire county council declared a major incident, with at least 200 properties evacuated as the River Idle reached record levels.

Katharine Smith, an Environment Agency flood duty manager, said: “Ongoing flooding is probable on some larger rivers including the Severn, Ouse and Trent through to Tuesday.”

Keir Starmer has called on ministers to end the “never-ending cycle” of flooding while on a visit to Wales.

Speaking to broadcasters in Port Talbot, he said: “My heart goes out to all those that are affected by this.

“Above all else, we need a government with a strategy, a prevention strategy, to make sure we are not continually in this cycle, this never-ending cycle, that affects people so deeply.”