Kent homes flooded after heavy rainfall

Flooded home in Patrixbourne
Image caption Water from the River Nailbourne has flooded a number of homes including this house in Patrixbourne

Homes have been flooded in several parts of Kent following heavy rainfall across the county.

Firefighters had to pump water away from properties in Swanley and Paddock Wood earlier.

Water from the River Nailbourne has also flooded several homes in Bridge, near Canterbury, and homes at a caravan park in Yalding have been evacuated.

Schoolchildren were rescued from a bus caught up in flooding in the Canterbury area on Friday morning, police said.

A section of the chalk cliffs at Dumpton Gap in Broadstairs has collapsed on to the beach, and the slip is also thought to be weather-related.

Image copyright Robin Grant
Image caption Chalk is more vulnerable to the elements than granite and limestone
Image caption Pumping stations have been deployed at points along the River Nailbourne
Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Amber "be prepared" rain and wind warnings have been issued for the South East

The Environment Agency has issued 10 flood warnings for the River Medway, Beult, Bourne, Darent, Nailbourne and Little Stour.

Pumping stations and sandbags have been deployed at points along the River Nailbourne.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service said it had been responding to a number of weather-related calls overnight and earlier.

A spokesman added: "Firefighters are currently pumping flood water away from a property in Pinks Hill, Swanley.

"A woman was rescued after becoming trapped in flood water in her car in Hawkhurst this morning.

"Crews assisted partner agencies with the evacuation of people from their homes in a caravan park in Yalding and have also pumped flood water away from eight properties in Mile Oak Road, Paddock Wood."

More than 600 properties were flooded as storms swept across Kent on Christmas Eve, with Yalding one of the worst-affected villages.

'Prepared for disruption'

The Met Office has issued amber "be prepared" rain and wind warnings for the South East until Saturday.

In a statement, it said a band of rain, heavy at times, and coastal gales would move across from South West England later.

It urged people to "be prepared for disruption due to flooding".

Winds are expected to reach up to 80mph in exposed spots.

The Environment Agency said the Leigh Barrier on the River Medway was expected to be operating on Saturday to protect properties in the Tonbridge area.

Southeastern trains has warned passengers to expect disruption because of the risks of landslips and fallen trees and debris on the lines.

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Media captionThousands of sandbags are handed out to residents in Kent and Sussex in preparation for more heavy rain and rising flood waters

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