The British army has been called in to build sandbag barriers against flood water in southeast England as parts of the country experienced the wettest January on record.
Flood warnings were spreading to the southeast on Monday after weeks of deluge in the southwest. The UK’s Met Office said several weather warnings remained in place, with more heavy rain and gale force winds expected.
Angry residents in the southwest have criticised the government for not doing enough to prevent flooding or reacting quickly enough to help those affected by the devastation.
David Cameron, the prime minister, announced extra funding for flood defence repairs and maintenance in response to the cricitism.
High tides and stormy seas
In the Somerset Levels, where muddy brown water stretched off in all directions as far as the eye could see, nearly three million tonnes of water were being pumped out every day.
Earlier in the week, high tides and stormy seas destroyed a large section of sea wall at Dawlish in Devon, washing a stretch of railway track into the sea.
Further flooding and landslips cut off all rail links to Devon and Cornwall on Saturday.
On Sunday afternoon Network Rail, the UK’s rail network operator, said one route had now reopened for a limited service, with trains running at a reduced speed.