Forget about a white Christmas – and prepare for a wet one
Rain set to bring floods and travel chaos – though it might stop in time for Christmas Day
FORGET about a white Christmas - much of Britain is set for a wet festive period, with heavy rain bringing more floods to round-off a dismal 2012 weather-wise.
With persistent heavy rain arriving from the west and falling onto already saturated ground, much of the country is now facing the prospect of floods and travel chaos over Christmas.
By lunchtime today there were more than 40 flood warnings in place and 220 flood alerts across England and Wales. Residents were evacuated from the Hampshire village of Wallington after cracks appeared in a river wall.
Fire crews rescued several motorists after their vehicles were inundated in the west of the country.
The Environment Agency has warned residents of southern and southwestern England, southeast Wales, the Midlands and the northeast of England to expect further rain over the weekend.
"Further active frontal systems will move across the UK over the next few days and we could see rainfall mounting up to more than 100 mm in parts of southwest England and parts of eastern Scotland by the end of the weekend," said a Met Office spokesman.
In the West Country, people are “in despair”, the Daily Mail reports, as the area faces another flood battering.
"So far most of the flooding appears to have been caused by smaller streams overflowing and the run-off from sodden fields," said The Guardian. “More serious flooding could follow if the rain continues and larger rivers, still swollen from earlier in the year, top their banks.”
On the plus side, the rain has bought mild temperatures, and there could be a respite from the wet weather on Christmas Day.
"Conditions on December 25 could be perfect for winter walks, with sunshine set to grace much of the country," said the Mail. "The mild conditions are predicted to continue into Boxing Day but Britain is likely to see in the New Year with a bout of wet and windy weather."