Bewdley flooding: Residents evacuated as flood defences breach

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Media captionRiver levels rise at Ironbridge

Residents in Worcestershire have had to evacuate their homes as flood waters rose above defensive barriers.

It comes as two severe flood warnings remain in place in Shropshire with the River Severn at risk of overtopping defences in Ironbridge.

Sally Yardley left her ground floor flat in Bewdley which overlooks the river just before midnight on Tuesday.

“The water was rising really quickly,” she said. “I don’t think we ever predicted it would be this bad.”

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PA Media/ @Threeintheriver

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Water began pouring over defences in Bewdley on Tuesday evening

The 64-year old said she was worried about her possessions. “We haven’t got anywhere to put them,” she said.

“We’ve got no insurance, they wouldn’t insure us, and we’ve got no upstairs.”

The barriers near Mrs Yardley’s home in Beales Corner which overtopped, are not the main defences in the town, however. These remain in place in Severnside, although people are advised to avoid the area.

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PA Media

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The Boat Inn in Jackfield, near Ironbridge, was flooded on Tuesday

The Environment Agency (EA) feared flood waters would overtop defences in Ironbridge on Tuesday night too, and while the barriers held it said the town was still at risk.

A warning was issued to people living along the river to move possessions to safety and have a bag prepared in case they needed to leave their homes.

Rising waters meant the barriers in the town had moved 3m however the defences are still operational.

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Water levels have peaked in Shrewsbury, however a severe flood warning remains in place

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PA Media

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Some residents in Ironbridge have been advised to leave their homes

Telford and Wrekin Council Leader, Shaun Davies, said he was “encouraged” but “the strain on them [the barriers] is very evident”.

“Another tense day ahead,” he said.

River Severn levels are expected to remain high over the next few days due to “unsettled” weather, the EA said, adding it was “closely monitoring the situation”.

Levels are expected to reach up to 6.85m upstream in Buildwas and there is another severe warning for Shrewsbury.

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Telford and Wrekin Council

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Water was expected to go over the barriers at Ironbridge on Tuesday night but the barriers held

Train lines remain closed out of Shrewsbury railway station due to high water levels under the Severn Railway Bridge and trains are only running out of the station towards Crewe and Chester.

Network Rail said it could not provide a firm estimate as to how long the disruption would last but it would be carrying out a safety inspection later.

River levels are also continuing to rise in Worcester, however the city’s main bridge remains open.

Dave Throup from the EA said Wednesday would be “a big day – again” for flooding in the region.

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