River Severn bursts its banks and homes evacuated as water levels continue to rise

ITV News Central's Lucy Kapasi reports from Bewdley as water levels continued to rise, threatening to breach flood defences

The River Severn has burst its banks with water creeping towards homes and local businesses in Worcestershire, where flood barriers have been erected.

Dozens of homes in Bewdley have also been forced to evacuate due to the rising water levels from heavy rainfall amid Storms Dudley, Eunice and Franklin - which left 1.4 million households without electricity.

Severe flood warnings, including a "threat to life", have been issued for Bewdley in Worcestershire, as temporary flood defences have overtopped.

Rescue boats are being deployed in Bewdley after the town’s temporary flood barriers breached.

Residents on the edge of the flood waters still battling to keep their homes dry, as the river level continues to rise.

ITV News Central Reporter Lucy Kapasi captures firefighters rescuing residents in Shropshire

West Mercia Police also declared a 'major incident' in the town earlier this week and closed off the main roads.

Bewdley, which is situated on the bank of the River Severn, has suffered this kind of flooding for three consecutive years now after temporary flood barriers failed - with residents continuously pleading with the Prime Minister to upgrade flood defences.

Floodwater from the River Severn has breached the town's flood defences following high rainfall from Storm Franklin Credit: PA

What are the areas most at-risk of flooding?

In Worcester, Hylton Road, Tybridge Street, Dolday and The Butts were closed on Wednesday and river levels in the city were expected to peak later.

The Wye has peaked in Herefordshire and flood water has been slowly receding.

Elsewhere, in Ironbridge in Shropshire, water levels were still high against barriers, so the Wharfage remained closed to vehicles and pedestrians, Telford and Wrekin Council confirmed.

Temporary flood defences were erected in the town in both 2019 and 2020 as the National Audit Office warned that the share of funding for flood defences going to deprived areas had "reduced substantially" in recent years.

Last year, Bewdley was among the worst-hit areas in England for flooding.