Spells of heavy rain and gale force winds have been forecast for the region from Friday into the weekend, contributing towards making this the wettest winter in 250 years in England.

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Norman Robinson from the Environment Agency said: “People really need to keep an eye on the forecast and local conditions as we move into the weekend.

“We could have up to 20mm of rain over already wet ground so river levels will rise again and flood plains will get wetter.

“Travel across the region could be difficult and dangerous in places.”

The east of England, although exceptionally wet, has been fortunate in that less rain has fallen here than elsewhere.

The Environment Agency is currently managing water flows through river systems, using flood storage reservoirs such as the Northampton Washlands and Halstead Flood Alleviation Scheme and structures including Denver Sluice, to prevent more widespread flooding.

Expected rain, although making levels rise again, should be able to be managed through the river systems in the same way.

Mr Robinson added: “We don’t expect water levels anything near those seen in other parts of the country, but we’re still getting far more rain than we’ve seen for years and everywhere will be extremely wet.

“There could be isolated pockets where homes and businesses flood from surface water or rivers, so people really do need to keep an eye on the local situation.

“If you’re at all concerned, make sure you check Flood Warnings on our web site regularly, and if you think you or your neighbours might be at risk, take action in good time.”

Flood Warnings on the website are updated every 15 minutes and there is also information on how to prepare for flooding and what to do if you have been flooded.

People can also call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 for information.

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