Downing Street defends spending on flood defences

The Prime Minister's spokesman has hit back at suggestions the Government is not doing enough to improve flood defences.

What we've seen in recent days is an exceptional amount of rain falling, often on water-logged ground and floods happening in some cases very, very quickly.

We have prioritised flood protection and we are investing considerable amounts to ensure homes are protected properly

– prime minister's spokesman

The figures show that £2.17 billion is being spent over four years, he said.

The Government was investing more annually than at any time over the past decade, except in 2009-10.

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Risk of floods as rivers swell

Swollen rivers are still at risk of flooding over the next few days, the Environment Agency has said, as icy temperatures take hold of the UK. The rivers Thames, Trent and Severn remain at very high levels despite the improving weather.