Severe flood warnings removed for Greater Manchester as Storm Franklin passes

  • ‘Danger to life’ warnings were in place for the River Mersey following Storm Franklin’s rainfall
  • River Mersey reached its highest level ever recorded at Brinksway, Stockport
  • Residents living near areas affected forced to evacuate their homes last night

Severe flood and ‘danger to life’ warnings were issued for parts of south Manchester last night as Storm Franklin passed through, putting hundreds of homes at risk.

The warnings have since been removed as the storm has begun to ease.

The warning had been in place for the River Mersey at East Didsbury, West Didsbury and Northenden following the unprecedented rainfall throughout the night and early hours of this morning.

Councillors warned that 430 homes were at risk of flooding, leaving residents living near the areas affected forced to evacuate their homes during the night.

Evacuations started on Sunday afternoon in East Didsbury and the Palatine Road area of West Didsbury.

Councillors went door to door to warn and evacuate those at risk, directing them to a rest centre set up at Didsbury Mosque.

At one point during the storm, the River Mersey reached its highest level ever in one area. 

The river stood at 4.29m at Brinksway in Stockport, the highest level recorded in two decades.

Images taken on Crossley Road, on the border of Heaton Chapel and Burnage, a spot well-known for flooding, showed a car stranded in floodwater beneath a bridge.

National Rail also told people not to travel, with many services being cancelled and disruption expected after Storm Dudley and Storm Eunice, which arrived within 48 hours of each other, caused widespread damage to tracks around the country.

Several of the rails services were disrupted due to downed trees and other debris blocking lines.

Stretches of the M60 in Greater Manchester were also closed due to incidents during the storm.

The M6 was also closed in Lancashire between junction 27 and 28 after an HGV hit a bridge and caught fire, causing further travel chaos.

After the 4am peak, emergency evacuation operations were stood down.

Manchester city council leader, Bev Craig, took to social media to assure concerned residents that luckily, no flooding or damage to properties had taken place through the chaotic night.

Storm Franklin was confirmed by the Met Office, a few days after Storm Eunice brought devastation to other parts of the country.

The events marked the first time three named storms have been recorded within seven days since the storm-naming system began in 2015, with Dudley, Eunice and Franklin.

Despite the warnings being removed, The Met Office has issued a warning of more severe weather conditions to the UK this week.

The Met Office said: “We are expecting to issue further national severe weather warnings this week.

“It will remain unsettled this week, but the risk of further impacts from wind and rain is much lower than we have seen in recent days, particularly across the south”.

They added: “The weather is expected to be more settled on Friday before another windy spell, especially in the north, heralds the start of the weekend”.