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Cumbria weather: Homes flooded and travel disrupted

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Heavy rain has hit Cumbria with reports of flooding at a “handful” of homes and road and rail travel disrupted.

The Met Office has issued an amber, or medium risk warning, which will be in place until 23:59 BST on Thursday.

Honister Pass in the Lake District has seen more than a foot (30cm) of rain in 36 hours.

Some roads, including the A591 between Rydal and Grasmere, have been flooded, and Cumbria Police has advised people to only travel if necessary.

There are also reports of problems on the A595 at Duddon Bridge.

Image caption,Levels rose on the River Kent at Kendal overnight

Stewart Mounsey, the Environment Agency’s flood risk manager for Cumbria, said: “Sadly we are seeing some properties being flooded, it’s only a handful at the moment, but that’s obviously devastating for those involved.

“We’re still gathering the number of those and locations.”

Image caption,The A592 at Windermere became submerged following a downpour on Wednesday

BBC weather presenter Carol Kirkwood said: “The weather is causing a lot of issues right now.

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“The Met Office has two amber weather warnings out for south-west Scotland and Cumbria for heavy rain.

“An amber weather warning means there’s an increased likelihood of impacts from severe weather, so disruption to transportation and the very real risk of flooding.

“The Honister Pass in the Lake District, in the last 36 hours, has seen just over a foot of rain – that’s just over 304mm.”

Image caption,Glenridding Beck, which channels water into Ullswater, was swollen on Wednesday afternoon

She added that there was a possibility of further rainfall in the affected areas.

There has already been disruption to cross-border rail services with Avanti West Coast advising passengers not to travel from stations in the north-west of England and Scotland before Friday.

Transpennine Express has advised people not to travel on the West Coast Mainline unless essential and has lifted ticket restrictions for the next two days.

Phil James from Network Rail told BBC Radio Cumbria that the heavy rain was “widespread” so it was “likely to affect many rail routes over the next few days” and urged people to check National Rail Enquiries for travel details.

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Image caption,The Met Office says severe weather is likely to remain over much of Cumbria during Thursday

Richard Warren from the Lake District Search and Mountain Rescue Association warned that now was not the time to go fell walking.

He said: “It’s half term, Scafell Pike is a bit of a honey pot, there were a lot of walkers out on the road looking very, very wet, the car park had quite a few cars in, so people may have gone up Scafell Pike when the rivers were low.

“But when they come down they will find they won’t be able to cross the rivers, so the message really is stay off the mountains.”

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

The Environment Agency has issued nine flood warnings, including for parts of Keswick, Grasmere, White Bridge, Stock Lane, Burneside, Steeles Row and Carling Steps, where river levels have risen.

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Mr Mounsey added: “We expect river levels to be peaking this afternoon, the quicker responding ones, and then obviously the River Eden is even bigger so we’ll see that responding Friday into Saturday.”

Environment Agency teams were monitoring the effect of the rain on rivers, focusing on western and southern parts of the county, “making sure flood defences work”, he said.

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