River levels are starting to subside in Thames Ditton.
The Thames Barrier closed yesterday for the first time since 2010. A combination of persistent rain and high tides led to the decision to protect the capital from flooding.
The effect of that decision was that river levels to the west of London rose sharply. The Environment Agency put nine flood warnings in place with areas like Thames Ditton and Sunbury-on-Thames the worst affected. The barrier reopened last night.
One volunteer from the RNLI lifeboat station in Teddington told me the river has been running very fast and very full since last night. With the ground saturated, the run-off water from the rain we’ve seen today has flowed straight into the swollen river.
The usually dry moat at Hampton Court Palace filled up last night – a sight which is very rare.
Pete Blackall from The River Club in Thames Ditton told me levels have now dropped by two feet.
There is still localised flooding in gardens near the river but it looks like the worst is over. However, with heavy bursts of rain forecast tomorrow afternoon onto saturated ground there are many flood warnings still in place.
The latest Environment Agency update says river levels on the River Thames remain very high in this area and will remain so over the next few days, There is widespread flooding of low lying land and some roads.
For a full list have a look at the Environment Agency’s website.
Totallydriving tweeted about Thames Ditton: