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Guildford Prepares For Floods In Wake Of Storm Dennis – UPDATED

Published on: 16 Feb, 2020
Updated on: 18 Feb, 2020

As Storm Dennis swept across the UK, Guildford was preparing for floods.

And with the River Wey rising rapidly this evening (Sunday, February 16) and over one metre through the day, Surrey County Council had erected barriers to protect the Arriva bus garage and properties in Mary Road.

The River Wey in Guildford was close to bursting its banks this afternoon. It rose a further 0.5m in just seven hours, blocking off the towpath and Millmead.

The Bedford Road car park had started to flood this evening. The Odeon cinema in Bedford Road and in the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre next to the river at Millmead were making provision against the rising river and installing their own flood barriers.

A car in the flooded Bedford Road car park had a lucky escape when its owners were warned of the danger of flooding by the police just in time.

Staff at the Arriva garage said that they had been told to expect the river to peak at 10am on Monday but this has not been corroborated.

Flood barrier in Mary Road to protect the properties (photo by Tony Rooth).

The Arriva bus garage backs onto the River Wey. Flood barriers were erected earlier to prevent flooding in the low lying area.

The government flood warning website, updated at 8:25pm on Sunday, February 16, said: “Flooding is expected – immediate action required.”

It was single lane only in many places in Surrey including on the A25 in Abinger Hammer.

It said that flooding of properties close to the River Wey was “possible later this evening” and that flooding of roads and farmland “is expected.”

The river levels in Guildford have been rising over the last 24 hours with the level at 10pm this evening recorded at 2.77m above sea level. 2.6m is the level at which flooding in the area is probable.

There were flood barriers outside the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre but the show, Oklahoma, by the Guildford School of Acting, still went on.

And after heavy and persistent rain throughout the day, weather forecasts said that further light rainfall is forecast over the next 12 hours.

We will be update our readers as the situation changes.

Update: The government flood warning website said this morning at 8am that: “Light showers are forecast for the next 48 hours, and we expect river levels to continue to rise.”

The river had already risen to over 3m above normal levels, about 0.5m above the level at which flooding is expected.

River levels on the Wey over the last five days showing that the river continued to rise overnight. (see government flood information website).

The White House pub terrace, overlooked by the Town Bridge, flooded overnight.

The river closed Millmead and was within 30m of the High Street. More rain and a further river level rise is expected.

The swollen river drew passers-by to admire and to photograph. An Environment Agency spokesperson said that it was important to view from a safe place and not on the river banks which were hard see under the flood.

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Responses to Guildford Prepares For Floods In Wake Of Storm Dennis – UPDATED

  1. Steve Knight Reply

    February 17, 2020 at 7:59 am

    And GBC wanted to build a road across the NE Guildford flood plain (by Clay Lane, between Burpham and Jacobs Well)!!

    This week’s weather highlights what a very bad decision that would have been.

    Without our flood plains the risk to property and infrastructure would be even worse (including to the proposed Weyside Urban Village).

  2. Sue Fox Reply

    February 17, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    The problems in NW Stoughton are wind. Fence panels are down all round.

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