More flood warnings across the South West
The region is on flood alert yet again after 24 hours of heavy rain and high winds, with the South West among the worst affected regions.
A combination of strong winds, large waves and high tide has led to a risk of coastal flooding in parts of South Wales, the Bristol Channel, Devon, Cornwall and along the south coast of England.
Access to Weston-super-Mare seafront will be temporarily restricted this weekend due to high tides.
North Somerset Council has warned that the town’s new £29 million sea defences will be activated due to high tides and forecasts of strong onshore winds and a tidal surge.
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Two months ago businesses along the seafront were flooded when the gates on the resort’s new £29 million sea defences were left open during a storm.
This weekend two hours before each high tide, the flood defence gates along the full length of the seafront will be closed, and re-opened again when it is deemed safe to do so.
The times of high tide coincide with festive events organised at businesses along the seafront and in order to avoid disruption, the council is advising anyone attending events on the seaward side of the defences over the weekend to arrive early before the gates are closed.
Because of the high numbers of people expected at events on the Grand Pier, the seafront flood gates will be closed last to enable guests to access the venue.
They may close as early as 7.30pm tonight.
North Somerset Council spokesman, Steve Makin, said: “Council officers will be on site monitoring the situation closely, and will keep them open for as long as possible to minimise disruption without compromising anyone’s safety. However, once the gates are closed, the promenade will not be accessible.
“The gates at the Grand Pier will be re-opened as soon as it is safe to do so after the high tide has passed and this is anticipated to be within 45 minutes and in plenty of time for anyone still arriving or leaving events at the end of the night.”
The time that is most likely to be an issue for people visiting the pier is 7.45pm and 8.45pm on Saturday night.
The Environment Agency continues to have 12 flood warnings in place: eight in the South West, three in three South East and one in Wales. A further 62 areas nationally have been told that flooding remains a possibility, particularly in the South West.