Video: Residents' flood concerns after recent rain and snowfall in North East Lincolnshire
MARCH usually heralds the arrival of springtime, but the area continues to be battered by freezing rain, winds and snow, instead.
The bitter winter weather sees no signs of letting up, with the Met Office issuing a severe weather warning for the remainder of this week, and the Environment Agency sending out flood alerts.
There is a 70 per cent probability of severe cold weather, icy conditions and snow hitting the region until Friday – and Caistor and the Wolds have already been hit by snow.
Helen Chivers, from the Met Office, said: "The conditions we are experiencing are partly because it is only March and it can still be cold, particularly if winds are blowing from the east, which they have been recently.
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"The temperatures have been colder than they should be and that is because of weather conditions blowing in from the east.
"We are likely to see a subtle change by the end of the week as the conditions will become drier and the rain, sleet and snow will stop, but it will still be cold and windy for the foreseeable future."
And the persistent rain and snowfall led the Environment Agency to issue flood alerts for the River Freshney and East Halton Beck yesterday.
Rita Penman, from the Agency, said: "Heavy rain and showers caused river levels in the region to rise over the weekend.
"It has been the second wettest year on record so far and we will continue to monitor rivers closely and issue flood alerts or flood warnings if people and property are at risk."
Noreen Turgoose, who lives off Queensway, on the Willows Estate, in Grimsby, remembers the flooding outside her property in 2007.
She said: "I was lucky that it didn't actually affect my house, but the road outside was absolutely swimming in water.
"They gave us sandbags to protect our properties.
"You do notice the river levels rise when it's been raining heavily and I'll be keeping a careful eye on it over the next few days."
Jill Makinson-Sanders is Mayor of Louth and an East Lindsey District Councillor.
She said: “Spring used to be a lovely time to visit Louth and it’s such a shame that this dreadful weather is continuing.
“People just don’t come and visit when the weather is like this and that is a major concern for the town on an economic note.
“I am a trustee of Hubbard’s Hills and the site has flooded several times this year already. It ruins the look of the place but obviously it is preferable that the hills flood to the town.
“A £12-million flood alleviation scheme by the Environment Agency is set to start in Louth soon and that should alleviate the problem of surface water flooding.
“Until then, we will just have to pray that the weather dries up.”
Jason Longhurst, head of development at North East Lincolnshire Council, said: "When the Environment Agency issues a flood alert, we undertake routine inspections and maintenance; monitor the weather and respond to any flood reports from the public with an on-site inspection."
Work to protect residents living near the River Fresney from flooding began in January and is now mid-way through.
Environment Agency contractors are driving 700 metres of steel sheet piles along the New Cut Drain – from Great Coates Road to Cromwell Road – to improve the Freshney Washland Flood Alleviation Scheme.
Councillor Ray Sutton, who represents the Freshney ward, said: “We are now mid-way through the construction of the barrier to protect the properties from flooding.
“It would be ironic after all the work to secure these defences if there were to be flood before it is finished.
“The Environment Agency works closely with people living in the homes adjacent to the river and I am sure they will be monitoring it make sure people are properties are protected.”
The Met Office is warning elderly and vulnerable people who feel their health is being affected by the cold weather to call NHS Direct on 0845 4647 or visit www.nhs.uk
WHAT is happening to our great British weather?
While our climate has always been prone to unpredictability, there seems to be a current theme going on at the moment – and that is wet, wet, wet...in fact if we get any more rain an ark may not seem like a bad idea.
But seriously if anyone has travelled across the country over the last few weeks and had the time to look at the fields and land around on their journey, they will have notices huge swathes lying under water.
It would appear, to the amateur, that the underground water table is now so high that any excess rainfall, sleet or snow, has nowhere to go – so it is standing on the land. If this continues, there could be serious implications for many of us.
*Have you experienced problems with flooding?
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