Several homes flooded in Cirencester and more than 70 without power on Christmas Day

A local councillor shared these images on Boxing Day, as bad weather returned to the town. Credit: Facebook / Councillor Mark Harris

A number of homes have been flooded and more than 70 were without power on Christmas Day after heavy rainfall in Gloucestershire.

One local resident from Cirencester said he spoke to an elderly woman who had to buy a torch on Boxing Day because she had no electricity or heating for more than 12 hours.

Another family had to be temporarily re-housed overnight, according to Cirencester Sales and Lettings. In a post on Facebook a spokesperson said:

"Unfortunately we have had to re-house a family due to local flooding, the flooding started yesterday and it won the battle overnight.

"We are lucky we work with some amazing Landlords who understand and care and we were all able to work together to find their temporary accommodation.

Not what anyone wants at anytime of the year! Thoughts are with anyone at this time still fighting the flood battle, it’s not over yet!"

A local councillor said others had to be evacuated from their homes and advised affected residents: "If you have any elderly relatives who fear they may be flooded, Covid rules can be relaxed with regards to staying with relatives, however apply all the usual precautions with regard to Covid."

There are flood warnings in place along the River Churn. Credit: Stephen Medlock

The poor conditions come after several parts of Gloucestershire woke up to flash flooding on Christmas Eve after extremely heavy rainfall.

While Christmas Day saw the weather improve dramatically, there was more rain overnight on 25 December and substations were flooded.

Further warnings are now in place as Storm Bella threatens to bring extremely strong gales and heavy rain to the West Country.

  • Leader of Cotswold District Council, Joe Harris, posted this video

The Environment Agency has now issued a flood warning along the River Churn, with the strongest alert in Cirencester.

Cotswold District Council said it is providing sandbags and is in contact with those families who have been affected and face suffering more upheaval.

Leader of the Council, Joe Harris, said: “We know that a number of our residents have had their Christmas ruined and we are doing all we can to support them.

“We are working with Cirencester Town Council which is providing local support and we are liaising with parish councils in Siddington and South Cerney which are also experiencing rising river levels and may have residents whose homes are under threat of flooding.

“We are replenishing sand bag supplies for communities at risk where the town and parish Councils have already exhausted their supplies."

The parish church in Cirencester is also open today (Saturday 26 December) for people to warm up, charge mobile phones, use the toilets and get a hot drink.

In a post on Facebook people were reminded to wear face masks inside the church and only visit with members of their household or bubble.

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service has been working with Thames Water to pump water out of some buildings but there is widespread concern that the incoming bad weather will cause the water levels to rise even more.

Bosses of Harry Hares, a restaurant in the town centre, have been appealing on social media for people to help pump water out of the building.

There are reports of flooding in Siddington and South Cerney too, according to one local councillor.

Get the latest forecast and Storm Bella warnings here.

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