Flooding causes thousands of pounds worth of damage to Sussex pub during cost of living crisis

  • ITV News Meridian's Andy Dickenson went to Uckfield to see the damage

A pub owner from East Sussex says he's been left thousands of pounds out of pocket after heavy rain flooded his business, causing extensive damage.

An Environment Agency flood warning has been issued for the River Uck in East Sussex, affecting Uckfield, Buxstead and Heathfield.

Nick Lloyd, Owner, The White Hart in Buxted, said: "We can't open, which is obviously a problem.

"Off the back of Covid and obviously the cost of living crisis with people not coming out as much as they were, the last thing I need is to not open.

"It's kind of shooting myself in the foot, but what can we do?

"We've lost quite a bit of beer down in the cellar and we've lost some equipment as well.

"This is the first time it's flooded as bad as this. It floods probably two to four times a year."

The cellar at The White Hart in Buxted has been badly flooded. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Rail services across parts of Sussex have also been impacted, with cancellations and delays.

Chris Denham, Network Rail said: "We've had lines blocked in places such as Wadhurst, which is just over the Kent Sussex border, Stonegate, which is a little bit further into Sussex and Plumpton as well, so that's affecting lines between Tunbridge Wells and Hastings and Lewes and Haywards Heath.

"It's been a very difficult morning but the good news is that the rain is moving off to the east so we should see these floods receding fairly soon."

There are also fears of property flooding at several locations in Crowborough.

The Met Office has warned that spray and flooding on roads could lengthen journey times.

Cars were submerged in water on Thursday. Credit: ITV News Meridian

A yellow thunderstorm warning has been issued from 8pm on Thursday until 6am on Friday for the south coast of England, with the Met Office saying flooding is likely as well as damage to some buildings and structures from lightning strikes, more transport delays, and possible short-term loss of power.

A yellow weather warning for rain, covering the south of England from Portsmouth to Canterbury and parts of London, was in place until 3pm on Thursday.

A total of 64mm of rain fell in Horsmonden in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, while some places saw over 50mm of rain in a 24-hour period, the Met Office said.

The forecaster said the top rainfall totals recorded in the 12 hours from 9pm on Wednesday until 8am on Thursday were at Kew Gardens in west London, where 42.2mm fell, and Odiham in Hampshire, where 40.2mm fell.

The weather service said the average rainfall for the entire month of November in Hampshire is 104.65mm.

Commuters faced issues with rush-hour transport due to the wet weather.

On Thursday morning, Transport for London (TfL) said there were delays to some services due to flooding while South Western Railway said that flooding had blocked lines leading to cancellations and delays.

Kent County Council warned people to "be careful out there" after it had multiple reports of weather-related issues across its road network due to "strong winds and heavy rain".