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Update: Homes in Iffley and Botley could flood overnight
OFFICIALS are tonight monitoring waterways around Botley Road and Abingdon Road after people were warned homes could flood overnight.
The Environment Agency has put the Thames and its streams in the city back under a flood warning, with forecasts of property flooding around Iffley tomorrow morning and in Botley on Monday morning.
And it says properties could be flooded overnight and people should expect flooding over the next two days.
A flood warning means flooding is expected and homeowners and businesses should take immediate action - and the agency has warned that some homes could be flooded overnight.
Tonight a senior city councillor said he thought that flood barriers would again be going back up as the water levels continue to rise.
County council officials are monitoring the situation on waterways around Botley Road and Abingdon Road - but say they remain stable at the moment.
In a statement tonight, the Environment Agency told the Oxford Mail:
"We issued the flood warning on a precautionary basis today as there's the potential for some property flooding overnight.
"At the moment, we are not deploying any flood defences but we are closely monitoring the situation and will review this as necessary.
"We are expecting a largely dry day tomorrow."
The agency says water levels will keep rising, however.
In a statement earlier today, the Environment Agency said: "The River Thames is currently very high and rising in the Iffley and New Botley areas. Water levels are expected to rise over the weekend and property flooding is to be expected in the Iflley area on Sunday morning and on Monday morning in the New Botley area.
"Levels are currently forecast to be lower than those seen during the Winter 2012 floods. The weather forecast is to expect some further showers in places on Saturday and Sunday."
It has added that the risk of flooding will continue into next week due to forecasts of further heavy rain.
City councillor Colin Cook, who lives in the Botley Road area near the flood-prone Bullstake Stream, tonight told the Mail the water was half-way up his garden.
But he said properties were not yet at risk.
"I don't know what the predictions are, but they seem to think it will be coming up tomorrow morning," he said.
"It's half-way up my garden, but one foot below what it was at its worst. But it's clearly on its way. The thing with Bullstake Stream is that it comes up relatively slowly and goes down relatively slowly. It's coming back up - not particularly fast, but it came up overnight."
Asked if properties were yet at risk of flooding, he said: "I doubt that there's anyone being flooded at the moment, but I suspect that they will be putting the flood barriers back up around the place.
"I suspect that everywhere is fine in our area. We'll see what happens in the coming days.
"I think people are just hoping for better weather, so that the water that is still there will work its way downstream. Their fear will be about the poor forecasts for more rain that there are. But we saw it off last time and we will see it off this time."
The only other flood warnings in the county are down in the south at Henley and Shiplake.
The current forecast for Oxford from the Met Office is for heavy showers on Tuesday and heavy rain the following day.
Tonight, Rodney Rose, the county councillor with responsibility for tackling flooding, said water levels on the waterways around Botley Road and Abingdon Road were currently stable.
"We are monitoring levels," he said.
"We have not felt it necessary to do anything further. We are doing what we always do: make sure we have mechanisms in place if we do have problems, but we don't want to scaremonger.
"In West Oxfordshire, there are a lot of flooded fields. Somehow that has to get past Oxford at some point, but as long as we get a period of light rain followed by a period of no rain, we remain stable."
But he joked that he hoped his analysis would not be remembered in the same way as Michael Fish's infamously incorrect prediction the night before the great storms of 1987.
"I hope what I am saying is not the same as Mr Fish saying there's no wind," he said.
"We have all precautions in place. At the moment we are monitoring Botley and Grandpont [the areas covering Botley Road and Abingdon Road] and they are stable."
The current flood alerts - which advise people to be prepared for flooding - are in place for:
- River Thames and tributaries from Buscot Wick down to Kings Lock, above Oxford, including Buscot, Kelmscott, Radcot, Chimney, Northmoor, Stanton Harcourt, Bablock Hythe and caravan park, Eynsham, Swinford and Yarnton
- River Thames and tributaries in the Oxford Area, including areas between Wolvercote down to and including Radley and Jericho
- River Cherwell and its tributaries from Lower Heyford down to Oxford including Rousham, Enslow, Thrupp and Hampton Poyle
- River Thames and its tributaries from Days Lock to above Pangbourne, including Dorchester and Overy, Shillingford, Benson, Ewelme, Wallingford, Winterbrook, East Hagbourne, South Moreton, North Stoke, Moulsford, South Stoke, Goring and Streatley
- River Thames for the Abingdon Area, including areas between Abingdon down to and including Little Wittenham
- River Ock from Watchfield to Abingdon including, Stanford in the Vale, Charney Bassett, Lyford and Garford, and also the Letcombe Brook at Wantage, Grove and East Hanney
- Ginge Brook, for the Steventon area down to and including Sutton Courtenay
- River Evenlode from Moreton in Marsh to Cassington including, Kingham, Bledington, Milton under Wychwood, Shipton under Wychwood, Ascott under Wychwood, Charlbury, Fawler and Long Hanborough and also the River Glyme at Wootton and Woodstock
- River Windrush from Bourton to Newbridge including Burford, Asthall, Minster Lovell, Crawley, Witney, Ducklington, Rack End and Standlake
- Clanfield Brook for Clanfield Village and the Shill Brook for Bampton
- River Ray and its tributaries from Shipton Lee to Islip, including Ludgershall, Blackthorn and Murcott
- River Thame from Marsworth to Dorchester including, Long Marston, Rowsham, North Aylesbury, Cuddington, Thame, Shabbington, Ickford, Waterperry, Cuddesdon, Wheatley, Quarrendon, Drayton St Leonard, Overy, the Chalgrove Brook at Chalgrove and Stadhampton
- Areas at risk of groundwater flooding in West Ilsley, East Ilsley, Compton, Chilton and West Hagbourne
Current road closures, according to Oxfordshire County Council are:
- Lower Road, Islip
- Road from A329 to Drayton St Leonard
- Great Brook Road from Buckland Road to Chimney near Aston
- Sandy Lane, Tiddington
- Spring Lane, Playhatch
- Grove Road, Harwell
- Icknield Road, South Stoke from Grove Road to Woodcote Road
- Barford Road, Barford St John
- B4016 between Blewbury and East Hagbourne
- Main Street, East Challow
Today, several football matches were cancelled due to the weather and the expectation of more rain.
Most football matches booked for this weekend on Oxford City Council sports pitches have been cancelled.
Sandy Lane, Blackbird Leys is the only site where games have or will be taking place.
An Oxford City Council official said: "We will be contacting all teams affected and rebooking games later on in the season."
Anyone with queries about their game this weekend should call 07711 439090.
According to officials, overall the county remains in the low-risk category for flooding for the coming days - whereas Gloucestershire is at high risk, and people are advised not to drive unless it is essential.
The low risk assessment - issued by the Environment Agency and in place until Monday - means:
- People should remain alert and ensure they access the latest weather forecast for up-to-date weather information.
- Be aware of conditions and drive accordingly
- Check flood warning details
- Call Floodline 0845 988 1188 for the latest flooding information.
If the situation worsens, we will once again be running live blogs bringing you the latest information, news, tweets and pictures at oxfordmail.co.uk