Shropshire flooding: Cars under water as River Severn levels peak in Shrewsbury
Red alert flood warning are in place across Shropshire and the Welsh borders today after the weekend's torrential rain.
Flood defences are up in Shrewsbury and Ironbridge and caravan owners on riverside sites in Bridgnorth are being warned about possible flooding as the River Severn peaks there tomorrow morning.
Shropshire and the Midlands were the worst hit by the weekend's weather, with rain in the Welsh hills adding to that falling on saturated ground in the county.
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All riverside footpaths remain flooded in Shrewsbury while parts of the Quarry park are covered in water, along with Frankwell car park which is fully closed and St Julian’s Friars car park which is partially shut.
Vehicles have been left stranded in both car parks, as well as next to the tennis courts off Town Walls, with some almost fully submerged.
Almost ten times the usual amount of water was flowing along the Severn this afternoon, with 485 tons per second registered at the Buildwas gauge compared to the norm of 50 tons per second.
The Environment Agency has issued 82 flood warnings and 117 flood alerts, with a dozen of the red flood warnings on the Vyrnwy and Severn in the region. There is also a flood warning on the River Dee south of Llangollen and a flood alert for the River Teme near Ludlow and Clun.
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Chris Bainger from the Environment Agency said the barriers in Shrewsbury put up over the weekend were doing their job.
"Levels are now at their peak in Shrewsbury at 4.06 meters. The flood defences are doing the job," he said.
"Don't be a victim of floods unlike some motorists who left cars in the car park, please be flood aware."
He warned motorists not to attempt to drive through flood waters.
"You could put your lives and the lives of others at risk," he said.
West Mercia Police also warned drivers to take care.
"Roads throughout our force area in flood. Please drive to weather and road conditions. Do not risk driving through flood water, if your vehicle is not suitable.
"Some drivers are still ignoring warning signs and driving in a dangerous manner, putting themselves and others at risk."
The focus will move to Bridgnorth overnight where the Severn has already come up over the bankside footpaths leaving benches and other street furniture under water.
Mr Bainger said that there was concern about possible flooding of riverside caravan parks and campsites.
"The sites will be busy with visitors as it is half term this week," he said.
Despite the warnings, the country is expected to have some dry and sunny weather on Monday.
In a forecast issued for Monday, the Met Office said: “Most areas bright with long periods of sunshine, albeit hazy across southern England.
“Most parts dry, but some showers over northern Scotland and the far east of England.
“Cloudier and windy over Cornwall where rain at times for some.”
Elsewhere in Shropshire
Firefighters worked around the clock over the weekend, helping those affected by the flooding by pumping out water and rescuing people and animals.
In the south of the county, the River Clun burst its banks on Saturday leaving the town "cut in two" by flooding, with the A488 heavily flooded.
Various roads around Shrewsbury, including the Battlefield Link Road, were also flooded on Saturday while a 94-year-old woman had to rescued from her flooded home in the town.
And in Craven Arms, six people and a dog were rescued from cars stuck in flood water.
In the north, Market Drayton's fire station put out an alert on Friday warning that a number of lanes and A and B roads had been closed, including the B5415 to Woore, A53 to Shrewsbury and A529 to Hinstock as well as the main road to Norton in Hales.
One house in the Betton area north of Market Drayton needed help on Friday night, with fire crews sending a rescue pump to help deal with "a large amount of rising flood water which was in danger of deluging the property" at about 7.30pm.
As well as pumping out water, firefighters helped salvage contents from inside the house.
The specialist light pumping unit was also sent from Shrewsbury and crews remained at the house overnight and into Saturday with relief teams attending from several stations across the county.
The following morning crews were sent to a farmhouse in the Moreton Say area, where floodwater was pouring into the building.
A spokesperson from Market Drayton Fire Station said: "On arrival the crew were met by shocking scenes of a large farmhouse virtually surrounded by flood water, which was bursting through under tremendous pressure in areas.
"The crew liaised with the occupier, and immediately prioritised assisting in rescuing a number of chickens, geese and ducks that that were trapped in an outbuilding with rapidly rising water entering it, as well as Marmalade the chicken who had become trapped on her own outside in the rising waters.
"Once all the animals had been safely rescued and transported to drier ground, the crew set about attempting to divert the flow of water away from the house.
"Members of the crew also assisted in carrying out salvage and the clearing of flood water which had entered the property.
"We would like to thank the occupiers for their calm approach and assistance during a very shocking and traumatic experience, and to a local farmer who provided assistance with farm machinery."
A number of properties also became flooded as drains struggled to cope in Sambrook, between Market Drayton and Newport, on Saturday.
Firefighters spent an hour pumping water off the road and clearing blocked drains until the water levels were low enough to keep the nearby houses dry.
Market Drayton Fire Station said crews around the county were inundated with calls and apologised for any delays in services before urging members of the public to only drive if necessary.
On Sunday afternoon crews were sent to reports of severe flooding affecting several commercial properties near Llewellyn Way in the town.
Buildings were submerged by 3ft of water and support was sent from firefighters based in Shrewsbury and Baschurch.