Europe Weather: Modern day ‘King Canute’ flood wall protect home

A man in the UK has been dubbed the modern-day “King Canute” after he built a huge to protect his AU$1.13 million property from flooding.

Retired engineer Nick Lupton, 60, and his wife Anne, 50, live in a converted 17th century house on the banks of the River Severn.

Since they moved into the four-bedroom detached property in Pixham, south of London, in 2016 the house and one-acre of land has flooded 11 times.

The couple became so fed up with the costly clear-ups, they decided to surround the entire property with a 7ft-high flood defence.

Nick and Anne spent four months constructing the brick barrier before finally finishing it last October, just weeks before Storm Henk swept Britain.

Stunning drone images show the black-and-white house and courtyard surrounded by flood waters after the River Severn burst its banks earlier this week.

Nick told The Sun: “We bought the house with our eyes wide open.

“We’ve been flooded 11 times since 2016. We live in a beautiful part of the world, right next to the River Severn, with one drawback – we get flooded.

“We finally decided to build ourselves a wall around the house.

“We built it last summer and it took about four months to complete.

“This flood is quite a high one, it’s close to the record in 2020, so it’s a really good test of it and so far it’s stood up to that.”

Residents living nearby have congratulated the couple for taking action to protect their home.

One said: “Nick’s a fabulous fella and we all applaud him for what he’s done – we call him Worcester’s answer to King Canute.

“Flooding is such a problem around here. It’s not just the fields that flood, it’s roads and homes.

“The powers that be must act soon to stop this misery happening again and again or people will simply move away.”

Part of the property was once the river ferryboat’s inn.

When it was a pub, the sound of floating beer barrels in the cellar was a sign of the rising water.

Before building the flood wall, Nick and Anne added a barriers in front of the doors and pumps under the floors to keep the flood water out.

The couple remortgaged to pay for the flood wall and said they hoped it would add value to their home as a result.

Floods and cold wreak havoc across Europe

Europe has been grappling with a tumultuous start to the new year as severe weather conditions wreak havoc across the continent.

From devastating floods to bone-chilling cold, various countries are facing nature’s wrath.

In the United Kingdom, the aftermath of heavy rainfall on Thursday has left hundreds of flood warnings in place.

A party boat on the River Thames in London sank due to adverse weather conditions.

The UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency assured that everyone on board was safely accounted for.

Meanwhile, approximately 70 firefighters rushed to address flooding caused by a breached canal in the east of the capital.

Nottinghamshire in the nations’ midlands declared a major incident due to rising river levels along the River Trent, with concerns that levels could reach record highs.

The deluge followed Storm Henk, which battered southern regions earlier in the week, claiming one life in Gloucestershire when a falling tree crushed a car.

Across the English Channel, Storm Henk also inflicted intense flooding in northern France, resulting in power outages, evacuations, and one fatality. The Pas-de-Calais department faced a “red alert” for flooding on Thursday, which was later downgraded to an orange alert on Friday, according to Météo France.

Germany is reeling from persistent flooding over the past two weeks, prompting Chancellor Olaf Scholz to visit a heavily affected area in Saxony-Anhalt.

Soldiers are set to deploy in Mansfeld-Südharz to distribute 600,000 sandbags as the country braces for more rain.

Helge Tuschy from Germany’s Weather Service warns that the full extent of flood damage is yet to be determined, anticipating additional rain on Friday. The ongoing weather challenges in northwestern Europe echo the impact of Storm Ciarán in November, which claimed lives and brought hurricane-strength winds.

– With The Sun

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