Sandbags deployed in York as river levels rise after Storm Bella

Flood warnings have been issued for the the River Ouse at St George’s Field and Queen’s Staith and for riverside properties in Clementhorpe as river levels continue to rise following Storm Bella.

By 5pm today water levels in the Ouse had risen to 2.8 metres (more than 9 feet) above normal. They are expected to peak at 9.30am tomorrow morning at about four metres (13 feet) above normal, according to the Environment Agency.

The Railway Walk flood gate in York has been closed, making Scarborough Bridge inaccessible. And council workers were today setting up ‘sandbag barriers’ to protect Clementhorpe, Tower Gardens and Tower Street as a precautionary measure. Pumps were also installed at the bottom of Peckitt Street.

The Environment Agency also issued a flood warning earlier this afternoon for the River Ouse at Naburn Lock and flood alerts for the upper River Ouse at Haxby and the ridal River Ouse between naburn Lock and Selby. There was also a flood alert for the lower River Derwent.

St George’s Field car park was closed today, with a ‘road closed: flood’ sign at the entrance, though a number of cars remained in the car park as of 2.30pm.

York Press:

A ‘sandbag barrier’ being put in place at Clementhorpe today

Rowntree Park will remain open today until 4pm, but will be closed tomorrow.

York Central MP Rachael Maskell tweeted this morning: “The Ouse is rising. York is likely to see its third flood of over 4four metres in 2020. Properties are not expected to flood, but once again riverside businesses will.”

The council says the river level is expected to slowly decline after peaking tomorrow morning. 

Councillor Paula Widdowson, executive member for climate change, said: “As a city, we’ve spent a lot of time and effort preparing for flood risk so we can protect people and property. This means we should be able to get on with our lives as usual.

“The expected levels are lower than we saw in February this year. We’re putting in place the local and citywide flood defences, and any residents or businesses at risk of flooding should also put their own flood plans in place.”

York Press:

A ‘sandbag barrier’ being put up at the entrance to Tower gardens today

For more information on floods in York, including advice on how to prepare, visit . Information on flood warnings is available at 

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