A month’s worth of rain was set to fall on the UK on Wednesday as severe downpours brought flooding to large parts of the country. Flash flooding hit towns and villages in the East Riding of Yorkshire and north-east Lincolnshire. There was a metre (3ft) of standing water in parts of Withernsea, and further flooding in the Grimsby and Immingham areas.
The Humberside fire and rescue service said it responded to calls on Tuesday evening from Bridlington to Hull, and from towns south of the river Humber. Grimsby Town’s League Cup football match with Derby County had to be abandoned on Tuesday night because of the heavy rain.
Social media users posted pictures of stranded cars on the road into Flamborough, with Melanie Onn, Labour MP for Great Grimsby, tweeting pictures of the waterlogged roads, saying some were “like a river” and that the water was “over my ankles”.
While continental Europe experienced a heatwave, Brits used the hashtag #Britishsummertime to post tongue-in-cheek memes and gifs of rain and flooding, featuring Noah’s Ark, Singing in the Rain and Game of Thrones’ Jon Snow facing the elements.
With forecasts for as much as 80mm (3.2in) of rain in parts of the country over the next 24 hours, the Met Office warned that more flooding of homes and businesses was possible throughout the evening, In some places, 20-30mm was predicted to fall within two or three hours.
A yellow weather warning for rain was issued for parts of the UK, including the East Midlands, West Midlands, London, East Anglia and the south-east.
“An area of heavy rain will sink slowly southwards across the east and south-east of England during Wednesday,” said the Met Office. “Some transport routes may be affected by localised flooding, leading to longer journey times. In addition, flooding of homes and businesses is possible. The heaviest of the rain should gradually become confined to the extreme south-east of the UK later in the day.”
The Environment Agency said it was expecting the river Leen in Nottinghamshire to flood, while areas around the North Sea coast at Scarborough were put on alert. Railway lines and train stations were also at risk of flooding, and South West Trains warned passengers of “heavy and persistent rain”.
Roads in Berkshire and Wiltshire were hit by flooding, and in Ashford, Kent, residents had to evacuate a block of flats after the roof of residential flats was struck by lightning and set on fire. There were no reported injuries, but four fire engines were sent to the building and Red Cross volunteers were at the scene. Heavy rain also flooded a stretch of the M20.
The downpours came three weeks after heavy rain lashed the country and led to flash flooding in the Cornish coastal village of Coverack. Fifty properties were affected and several people had to be rescued from their homes.
The weather is not set to improve soon, with more rain forecast for the rest of the week. Conditions should be dry this weekend, but temperatures are unlikely to breach 22C (72F) over the next 10 days.