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Couple console each other after finding their narrow boat has SUNK in torrential downpours as floods leave entire towns underwater and spark travel chaos for commuters – with more rain set to lash Britain tonight

A couple seen consoling each other after their narrow boat sank are among the latest victims of major flooding and rainfall across the UK that has crippled infrastructure days after Storm Henk ripped through the country...READ THE FULL STORY HERE▶

Tewkesbury has been all-but-marooned by downpours as the Met Office expanded a rain warning while Nottinghamshire County Council has declared a major incident, urging residents to prepare for evacuation as river levels hit near-record highs.

Paddington station has been plunged into chaos amid flooding at Newbury and an incident on the line at Reading, with some commuters reporting that they were ‘stranded’ in London as a result.

Great Western Railway has advised customers ‘not to travel’ because of flooding and an incident on the railways at Reading. It said: ‘Disruption is expected until the end of the day and you may not be able to complete your journey.’

Thameslink, Southern, Gatwick Express and South Western Railway also warned of severe disruption with speed restrictions already imposed on some lines.

The Met Office initially issued a rain warning across southern England from Cornwall to Suffolk but then extended it northwards over Cambridgeshire and Norfolk. It runs until 3am tomorrow and warns of further power cuts and villages becoming cut off.

Meteorologists also warned of further flooding to homes and businesses, road closures, difficult driving conditions and cancellations to train services. It comes as:

  • The Met Office revealed up to 50mm (2in) if rain could fall in the worst-hit areas;
  • Nearly 600 flood alerts or warnings were imposed across England and Wales; 
  • Dramatic aerial photos revealed major flooding in Nottingham and Bedford; and
  • The UK Health Security Agency issued a cold weather alert from this Saturday. 

The area of low pressure will also bring severe winds – with the strongest primarily affecting Jersey, which was under a red warning that states: ‘Avoid outside activity’.

It comes just days after disruption caused by strong winds and rain from Storm Henk, which has left the ground saturated and more prone to flooding, according to forecasters.

A narrowboat broke free from its moorings at Barrow upon Soar in Leicestershire and capsized

A narrowboat broke free from is moorings at Barrow upon Soar in Leicestershire and capsized

A couple could be seen consoling each other by the banks of the River Soar as the boat went under

A couple could be seen consoling each other by the banks of the River Soar as the boat went under

Members of the local Rivers and Canal Rescue team attempt to stop the boat from turning over

Members of the local Rivers and Canal Rescue team attempt to stop the boat from turning over

Passengers are 'stranded' at London Paddington station amid flooding on the railways and reports of a person being struck by a train

Passengers are ‘stranded’ at London Paddington station amid flooding on the railways and reports of a person being struck by a train

Departure boards at Paddington display 'please wait' notices with regards to later services. Great Western Railway is urging passengers not to travel

Departure boards at Paddington display ‘please wait’ notices with regards to later services. Great Western Railway is urging passengers not to travel

Flooding in Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, after a major incident was declared in the county

Flooding in Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, after a major incident was declared in the county

Flooding in Radcliffe-on-Trent. The chair of the local parish council said it was the worst flooding she had seen in two decades

Flooding in Radcliffe-on-Trent. The chair of the local parish council said it was the worst flooding she had seen in two decades

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

People are rescued by a 4x4 after flood water ravaged parts of Gloucester

People are rescued by a 4×4 after flood water ravaged parts of Gloucester

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Another part of Bedford's River Great Ouse is pictured following Storm Henk

Another part of Bedford’s River Great Ouse is pictured following Storm Henk

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service shared this footage of rescuers working to save the occupant of a car trapped in rising flood waters. The driver escaped without injury

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service shared this footage of rescuers working to save the occupant of a car trapped in rising flood waters. The driver escaped without injury

Very high water levels of the River Avon through Bradford-on-Avon in Wiltshire this morning

Very high water levels of the River Avon through Bradford-on-Avon in Wiltshire this morning

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Flooding by the Boat Inn in Jackfield, Shropshire, this afternoon following heavy rainfall

Flooding by the Boat Inn in Jackfield, Shropshire, this afternoon following heavy rainfall

Flooding outside Benbow Quay in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, following heavy rainfall

The flood has left much of the ground impassible; Shropshire council says river levels 'will recede gradually'

Flooding outside Benbow Quay in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, following heavy rainfall. The flood has left much of the ground impassible; Shropshire council says river levels ‘will recede gradually’

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Riverside Park in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, today

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Riverside Park in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, today

Flood barriers have been installed along the River Severn to protect the village of Ironbridge

Flood barriers have been installed along the River Severn to protect the village of Ironbridge

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

The London Fire Brigade also warned that parts of London ‘may experience flash floods’ as a result of the rain, ‘so make sure you know what to do in an emergency’.

In the capital, hundreds of passengers have amassed on the concourse at Paddington station where services have been cancelled amid flooding on the line and reports of a person being struck by a train.

Responding to queries on X, formerly Twitter, GWR has been telling passengers to submit receipts for any alternative travel arrangements they have been forced to make in order to have refunds considered.

Tickets for today will also be valid tomorrow, the operator said.

Elsewhere in London a waterbound bar moored at Temple Pier was dragged under water and will not resurface.

Bar&Co had been serving drinks to guests and private functions from on board the Wilfred for 15 years.

But business manager Jorge Gallardo told MailOnline that he suspected the choppy waters of the Thames had lunged the boat into the pier, cracking open its hull and allowing water to pour inside.

He said: ‘Yes it sunk today. Really sad. The water got in really quickly, probably a crack on hull from weather conditions.

‘She (Wilfred) was over 100 years old and our business, a family business, for 15 years. Such good memories.

‘Really hard now not sure how we’ll make a living. I don’t think (the boat can be saved). I am a single parent and seems like really hard times.’

The Environment Agency had 293 flood alerts and 270 warnings in place across England this morning – while Natural Resources Wales imposed 20 alerts, four warnings and one severe warning for the River Ritec in Tenby, Pembrokeshire.

In Nottinghamshire, Councillor Neil Clarke, cabinet member for transport and environment, said the Trent’s water levels were due to peak this evening.

He told BBC Radio Nottingham: ‘We have already evacuated some communities – some low-lying areas – but as the levels are still rising, it is important people are aware and take precautions.’

Routes remained closed due to flooding including the A6097 at Gunthorpe and the A617 at Kelham, with drivers urged to avoid the areas for all but essential travel.

A Nottinghamshire County Council statement said today: ‘Nottinghamshire and Nottingham Local Resilience Forum has declared a major incident due to rising river levels on the River Trent and the flooding and future flooding in the area, caused by Storm Henk.

‘We, alongside our partner agencies, are advising residents living along the Trent Valley to be prepared for flooding as latest forecasts show that river levels along the River Trent could come close to the highest levels on record from the year 2000.’

It added: ‘If you live in an area at risk of flooding, consider whether you need to travel and only do so if necessary.

‘Make sure to avoid swollen rivers and flood water and never ignore road closure signs. We’re hearing reports of people ignoring closure which have been put in place, so remember, we close roads for your safety.’

Several residents of Radcliffe Residential Park, an estate of static caravans for the over-55s just to the east of Nottingham, have been evacuated due to high water levels.

Anne McLeod, of Radcliffe-on-Trent Parish Council, said: ‘It’s directly adjacent to the Trent so they get it quite badly, but in my memory, and I’ve lived in Radcliffe since 1975, this is the highest it’s been since 2000 when it last flooded that area.’

Also today, Kew Gardens revealed six trees were destroyed during the storm and would now be ‘mulched and added back’ to the attraction in South West London.

Officials said they were ‘sad to announce’ that the trees were ‘lost’, but added that work by their ‘tree gang’ to maintain 14,000 trees avoided a higher total.

The waterbound Bar&Co boat at Temple Pier in London has sunk after, its owner suspects, the hull was damaged on the choppy waters of the Thames

Owner Jorge Gallardo told MailOnline that it was unlikely the boat could be salvaged, putting an end to a 15-year family business

A car stuck in floodwaters near Southampton in Hampshire on Thursday evening. Hampshire Police has told drivers not to take their chances with standing water

A car stuck in floodwaters near Southampton in Hampshire on Thursday evening. Hampshire Police has told drivers not to take their chances with standing water

A car sits partially submerged in waters in Harrold, Bedfordshire after the River Great Ouse burst its banks

A car sits partially submerged in waters in Harrold, Bedfordshire after the River Great Ouse burst its banks

A trampoline sits in a field at Brafield-on-the-Green in Northamptonshire after Storm Henk's 90mph gusts swept it away

A trampoline sits in a field at Brafield-on-the-Green in Northamptonshire after Storm Henk’s 90mph gusts swept it away

Elsewhere, heavy rain across southern England led to the majority of Thames Water’s storm overflows discharging sewage into rivers and ground water.

It is likely that other water companies are also discharging more than usual but only Thames Water has published a live interactive map of its monitors on rivers.

Thames Valley Police has referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct after an 87-year-old woman died after hitting a tree during Storm Henk on Tuesday.

The tree had been reported to the authorities around 90 minutes before the fatal incident; one of a number of reports the force received at the storm’s peak.

In Shropshire, a number of car parks and roads have been closed after levels on the Severn threatened to top five metres overnight.

Shropshire council said: ‘River levels continue to be high; but the indication is that, as the peaks pass, they will recede gradually.’

Mario Thomas, landlord of The Boat Inn in Jackfield in the county, said the latest flood had been ‘an evil one’, adding: ‘It took us by complete shock and within literally hours, (the water) just kept rising so fast.

‘I knew it was going to flood but I didn’t think it was going to be so severe. It’s hit us hard because we didn’t have any time to get most of the furniture out of the building.

‘It doesn’t matter what flood defences we put up, we might minimise it, but we’ll never stop it.’

In Derbyshire, police have launched an animal welfare investigation after a number of cows drowned in a flooded field following heavy rain.

Derbyshire Constabulary’s rural crime team said it managed to save some cattle after it was called to a field in the village of Sawley, close to the M1.

In a post to X, formerly Twitter, the rural crime team said officers attended the flooded field with members of the Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service after calls relating to cattle.

They said they could save some cows but added: ‘Unfortunately, a number had already drowned and an animal welfare investigation is now under way.’

At the epicentre of the worst of the weather, Hampshire Police says it was experiencing a ‘high number of calls’ across the county and on the Isle of Wight.

Major routes including the M27, M3 and A31 are all experiencing closures, with reports of vehicles getting stuck in fords.

‘Police and partners will be working through the evening to resolve this matters – we advise anyone considering travelling to only do so if absolutely necessary, and to avoid fords and rivers,’ the force said.

Some tried to see the bright side. The Rose and Crown pub in Severn Stoke, Worcestershire, shared a video on Wednesday in which it offered customers free beer if they waded down to the pub – which is waist-deep in water.

Pub owner Andrew Goodall went viral with his clip as he sat with a pint whilst up to his elbows in floodwaters and told punters: ‘Good afternoon. Welcome to the Rose and Crown. Riverside view and probably the best Guinness in the country. Cheers.’

Commuters are battling tough conditions on the M20 in Kent (pictured), with drivers advised to take extra care on the roads

Commuters are battling tough conditions on the M20 in Kent (pictured), with drivers advised to take extra care on the roads

A car rushes through standing water on the motorway. A yellow weather warning is in effect across the south of England until tomorrow morning

A car rushes through standing water on the motorway. A yellow weather warning is in effect across the south of England until tomorrow morning

The Met Office rain warning from 12pm today was initially issued over southern England from Cornwall to Suffolk but then extended northwards to cover Cambridgeshire and Norfolk

The Met Office rain warning from 12pm today was initially issued over southern England from Cornwall to Suffolk but then extended northwards to cover Cambridgeshire and Norfolk

Up to 30mm (1.2in) of rain could fall in six to nine hours, with up to 50mm (2in) also possible

Up to 30mm (1.2in) of rain could fall in six to nine hours, with up to 50mm (2in) also possible

The Met Office said the low pressure area associated with the rain will also bring severe winds - with the strongest core primarily affecting Jersey, which was placed under a red warning

The Met Office said the low pressure area associated with the rain will also bring severe winds – with the strongest core primarily affecting Jersey, which was placed under a red warning

The Environment Agency has 293 flood alerts (in amber) and 270 warnings (in red) for England

The Environment Agency has 293 flood alerts (in amber) and 270 warnings (in red) for England

Natural Resources Wales imposed 20 alerts, four warnings and one severe warning in Tenby

Natural Resources Wales imposed 20 alerts, four warnings and one severe warning in Tenby

The Jersey Met today issued a red warning for strong winds, saying: 'Avoid outside activity'

The Jersey Met today issued a red warning for strong winds, saying: ‘Avoid outside activity’

Flooding continued to affect rail services today, with passengers heading for South West England warned to start their journeys before 3pm due to likely flooding.

Great Western Railway said those travelling by rail to Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon and Cornwall should leave as soon as possible

Great Western Railway said those travelling by rail to Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon and Cornwall should leave as soon as possible

Great Western Railway (GWR) said customers travelling by rail to Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon and Cornwall should leave as soon as possible, with services likely to be delayed or cancelled later today.

In a statement, the firm said: ‘With further flood warnings in place and the amount of rain forecast, Network Rail has identified key sites in Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon and Cornwall as being at risk of flooding from around 3pm. Trains may not be able to operate through these areas.’

Services between Paddington and Swindon will operate but may be affected by flooding elsewhere, the firm added. GWR said customers with tickets for later services today could use them on earlier trains.

Elsewhere, CrossCountry and Transport for Wales warned flooding between Gloucester and Lydney meant all lines were blocked. Also today, taxis replaced GWR trains between Liskeard and Looe in Cornwall after all lines were blocked.

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

A flooded A38 near Longford, Gloucestershire, today after the River Severn burst its banks

A flooded A38 near Longford, Gloucestershire, today after the River Severn burst its banks

A house is surrounded by flood water - with this resident leaving two rowing boats outside

A house is surrounded by flood water – with this resident leaving two rowing boats outside

A view of the pavilion at King's School in Worcester flooded by the River Severn

A view of the pavilion at King’s School in Worcester flooded by the River Severn

Flooding by the Boat Inn in Jackfield, Shropshire, this afternoon following heavy rainfall

Flooding by the Boat Inn in Jackfield, Shropshire, this afternoon following heavy rainfall

Flooding on North Parade in Worcester this afternoon following heavy rainfall.

Flooding on North Parade in Worcester this afternoon following heavy rainfall.

The Earith Bulwark fort from the English Civil War is revealed after flooding in Cambridgeshire

The Earith Bulwark fort from the English Civil War is revealed after flooding in Cambridgeshire

The clear outline of the 400-year-old fort in the Cambridgeshire Fens has been revealed today

The clear outline of the 400-year-old fort in the Cambridgeshire Fens has been revealed today

The Earith Bulwark in the Cambridgeshire Fens was built in 1643 by Oliver Cromwell's forces

The Earith Bulwark in the Cambridgeshire Fens was built in 1643 by Oliver Cromwell’s forces

Huge swathes of Worcester have been left underwater following the major flooding event

Huge swathes of Worcester have been left underwater following the major flooding event

All GWR lines were also shut between Bristol Parkway and Swindon due to flooding, with services between London Paddington and South Wales forced to divert.

Diversions could add 40 minutes to passengers’ journeys, the train operator said – adding that passengers could expect further disruption if high levels of rain return.

Elsewhere, South Western Railway said trains running across its whole network may be cancelled, delayed or revised until the end of today.

As a result, a 50mph speed restriction will be implemented on the routes of Bournemouth to Weymouth, Crewkerne to Honiton, Guildford to Fratton, Eastleigh to Hilsea, St Denys to Fareham, Wokingham to Guildford and Basingstoke to Southampton Central.

Services between Weymouth and London Waterloo will call additionally at Basingstoke, Woking and Clapham Junction in both directions; services between Portsmouth and Waterloo via Basingstoke will run fast between Basingstoke and Waterloo in the London direction; and services between Exeter St Davids and Waterloo will start from, and terminate at Basingstoke.

Services starting from Salisbury towards Waterloo will run as scheduled.

Gatwick Express, Southern and Thameslink – which are all part of Govia Thameslink Railway – also warned of disruption due to severe weather.

Speed restrictions were imposed in the Wessex area between Havant, Portsmouth and across to Eastleigh and Southampton, with Southern services only allowed to operate at 50mph in those areas.

The Met Office said heavy rain is expected to move northeast across southern and eastern parts of England throughout this afternoon before clearing overnight.

While the track of the heaviest rainfall ‘remains very uncertain’, up to 30mm (1.2in) could fall in six to nine hours, with some few places possibly seeing 50mm (2in).

Chaos is likely to be worsened due the ground across the region currently being very wet, before the weather turns drier, colder and more settled into the weekend.

One of the six trees at Kew Gardens in West London which was destroyed by Storm Henk

One of the six trees at Kew Gardens in West London which was destroyed by Storm Henk

Another of the trees destroyed by Storm Henk at Kew Gardens in West London this week

Another of the trees destroyed by Storm Henk at Kew Gardens in West London this week

Kew Gardens revealed six trees were destroyed during the storm which hit England this week

Kew Gardens revealed six trees were destroyed during the storm which hit England this week

A view of Worcester city centre flooded by the River Severn, following heavy rainfall

A view of Worcester city centre flooded by the River Severn, following heavy rainfall

Overnight frosts will return as temperatures fall to -5C (23F) in northern England and -2C (28F) in southern areas by Sunday. The UK Health Security Agency has issued a cold weather alert covering all of England from this Saturday until next Tuesday.

Met Office chief meteorologist Matthew Lehnert said: ‘The track of the heaviest rain remains uncertain but there is chance of 20 to 30mm of rain falling in a six to nine hour period for a portion of the warning area, with a few places seeing as much as 40 to 50mm.

‘Much of this rain is falling on already wet ground and therefore, impacts are more likely. Meanwhile, a stalled weather front will continue to bring rain and showers across the northeast.’

It comes after Storm Henk brought flooding and disruption to Britain as 94mph winds battered the Isle of Wight and homes were evacuated.

Gloucestershire Constabulary said a motorist in his 50s from the Bath area was killed by a falling tree, while driving near Kemble, between Tetbury and Cirencester, on Tuesday.

In Northamptonshire, several residents were evacuated from houseboats and caravans at Billing Aquadrome close to the River Nene due to flooding.

Robert Britchford moved to the site in 2016 and estimated that about 2,000 people have been evacuated from their homes.

He said: ‘It’s the second time in three years that it has flooded. I moved my cars out of the way, and I thought I would try and wait it out, because I thought it would be nice today, but no, the evacuation notice went out and that was it.

‘I’m a bit anxious. We felt it was coming, but we hoped it wouldn’t. Now we have to find hotels. They won’t let us back on until this is all sorted, so it could be a month before we come back on.’

Another holiday park in South Wales was flooded, with reports of raw sewage in the water.

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Flooding around the village of Bathford, three miles east of Bath, pictured this morning

Flooding around the village of Bathford, three miles east of Bath, pictured this morning

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Riverside Park in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, today

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Riverside Park in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Worcestershire's Cricket Ground in Worcester is unrecognisable following the flooding

Worcestershire’s Cricket Ground in Worcester is unrecognisable following the flooding

Natural Resources Wales urged people at Kiln Park caravan site near Tenby to avoid contact with the water and said the River Ritec is likely to remain high for several days.

Meanwhile, dozens of homes in Bottleacre Lane in Loughborough, Leicestershire, were either breached or surrounded by floodwater, with some residents trapped in their homes.

The ground floor of Ivan Fletcher’s property, where he has lived for 16 years, was covered by about a foot of water, with his possessions moved upstairs.

The father of nine, seven of whom live at home, moved six of his children to a relative’s home in Leicester, and one stayed in the property.

He said: ‘I woke up this morning to this. There was water everywhere, and it has got worse. There are bins everywhere, rubbish, the kids were panicking, stress.

‘I moved my wife and the kids to Leicester with her sister out of the way, and I’ll stay here with the cats, and my eldest daughter. It happened about 12 years ago but it was never this bad. We had no warning at all.’

National Highways said several major roads in England were closed due to flooding and rail companies also reported disruption.

A falling tree injured a woman in Orpington, South East London, and others damaged properties and blocked roads across the country.

Raw sewage has spilled from a flooded treatment works in Surrey when the River Mole to burst its banks.

Pollution spread over a public footpath beyond the fence of the unmanned Thames Water facility.

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Floodwater surrounds holiday homes at Billing Aquadrome in Northamptonshire today

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

Flooding around the River Arun in Pulborough, West Sussex, pictured this afternoon

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Environment Agency workers reinforce flood barriers along the River Severn at Bewdley today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Water from River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Heavy rain across southern England has led to the majority of Thames Water’s storm overflows discharging sewage into rivers and ground water.

It is likely that other water companies are also discharging more than usual, but only Thames Water has published a live interactive map of its monitors on rivers.

Simon Collins, of River Mole River Watch, said the Horley treatment works near Gatwick Airport has flooded four times since Storm Ciaran hit the UK in late October.

After the flood on Tuesday he tested the water pouring through the fence and found phosphate, a pollutant found in sewage, to be ‘off the scale’.

Thames Water has apologised for the pollution and said it has installed a temporary pump to clear the water while it upgrades the treatment plant in the long term.

The storm brought gusts of 94mph at Needles on the Isle of Wight while Exeter Airport saw winds of 81mph, and a family was left ‘exposed to the elements’ more than 400ft in the air when strong winds ‘ripped the hatch’ off their London Eye pod.

David Nock, 43, from Bournemouth, Dorset, said that the Eye began ‘flexing’ on the way up and that it kept stop-starting as it struggled with the wind on Tuesday.

The observation wheel came to a total halt and ‘wasn’t going anywhere’ at the top, he said, leaving him and his family of 11 stranded for five minutes.

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

River levels rise as the Thames breaches its banks at Sonning-on-Thames in Berkshire today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Houses on the banks of the River Trent near Nottingham are surrounded by floodwater today

Water is pumped into the River Severn after heavy rain from Storm Henk in Bewdley today

Water is pumped into the River Severn after heavy rain from Storm Henk in Bewdley today

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Flooding on the tracks near Chipping Sodbury between Bristol Parkway and Swindon today

Flooding on the tracks near Chipping Sodbury between Bristol Parkway and Swindon today

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Great Western Railway trains are disrupted today by flooding between Swindon and Bristol

Great Western Railway trains are disrupted today by flooding between Swindon and Bristol

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

Water from the River Great Ouse floods Bedford this morning following Storm Henk

A spokesman for the London Eye said that after an ‘isolated technical issue’, they ‘immediately ensured that guests safely disembarked’.

Several rail routes remained disrupted due to flooding, but some have reopened.

Yesterday, Greater Anglia said at 7am that it was still experiencing ‘severe disruption’, with ‘do not travel’ warnings in place on routes in Norwich, Colchester, Peterborough and Cambridge. All lines reopened by 9am.

Great Northern Rail services resumed between Cambridge and both Ely and King’s Lynn after work to repair damaged overhead wires and remove a fallen tree.

National Highways said the A21 in East Sussex was closed between the A2100 near Johns Cross and the A28 near Baldslow because a fallen tree was resting on power cables above the road.

Flooding closed the A52 in Nottinghamshire westbound from the A46 at Saxondale to the A6011 at Gamston.

Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service said it had received 140 flood-related calls in 24 hours while Leicestershire Police said a large number of homes were affected by flooding in Loughborough.

The Environment Agency urged people to avoid walking near coastal paths where large waves could drag them into the sea.

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Kylian Walterlin

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