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Suffolk: Winds touch gale force overnight but East Anglia escapes worst weather

PUBLISHED: 07:32 06 January 2014 | UPDATED: 07:40 06 January 2014

Winds reached gale force last night in parts of Suffolk

Winds reached gale force last night in parts of Suffolk

Archant

Winds reached gale force in Suffolk last night with parts of the county seeing gusts of 35 knots or 41mph.

Wattisham saw some of the highest wind speeds in the county, gusts there were expected to reach 45mph.

Despite the fairly high winds Phil Garner, forecaster at Weatherquest, said East Anglia was not in the firing line for some of the bruising winds that have caused flooding in other parts of the country.

The breezy conditions are expected to last until tomorrow night, he said, before calming down. Another blustery day is expected for Friday.

This morning the Environment Agency had four flood warnings and 19 flood alerts in place for the Anglian region, however none of these affected Suffolk or north Essex.

Warnings are no longer in force for the Suffolk and Essex coast from Felixstowe to Clacton including the Orwell and Stour Estuaries, the Essex Coast from Clacton to St Peters Flat including the Rivers Colne and Blackwater Estuaries, the Tidal Deben Estuary and the River Colne from Great Yeldham to and including Colchester.

Across the UK strong winds and large waves are expected to cause further coastal flooding today.

The Environment Agency issued one severe flood warning in Dorset - meaning “there is significant risk to life” - and 87 flood warnings where flooding is “expected” across almost every region in England and Wales.

The Met Office issued a “be aware” yellow warning for wind as gusts of up to 70mph are expected on the west and south-west coast of Britain and the east coast of Northern Ireland today.

This will cause “exceptionally high waves”, the Met Office predicted.

Heavy rain fell across much of the UK last night, with up to 1.6in (40mm) expected on higher ground.

The Environment Agency estimates that about 220 properties have been flooded so far as miles of coastline have been battered and roads and fields across the country are under water.

The transport network has also been hit, with roads closed and trains delayed or cancelled in many areas.

First Great Western warned passengers there was a risk to services in Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, Wiltshire and Dorset.

The Thames Barrier was in operation last night to protect people and property along the river.

In Oxford a 47-year-old man died when his mobility scooter fell from a flooded path into a river.

Thames Valley Police were called to Osney Lock near the city centre at 6.30pm on Saturday after receiving a report that the man had fallen into the river.

A police spokesman said the man’s death was being treated as unexplained but was not believed to be suspicious. His next-of-kin has been informed.

Shane and Zoe Coldron were Chantry School childhood sweethearts. But unexpectedly Zoe, 44, collapsed and died last week. Her husband Shane has spoken about how the family is coping, plus the overwhelming support he has received.

East Anglia’s rail services faced a day of chaos as the morning storm brought trees down across several routes.

Broadcasting group Celador faces a rival bidder for the renewal of the Ipswich commercial radio licence which it acquired last year.

Two vehicles have collided on the B1078 this afternoon between Clopton and Charsfield.

Suffolk police received 680 calls in five hours during the high winds this morning - 600% more than in a usual day.

Reporter Gemma Mitchell has compiled a varied but by no means exhaustive list of influential women who have made their mark in Suffolk, from business and charity leaders, to educators and campaigners.

Major traffic disruption and storm damage is being reported across the region today as gusts of up to 80mph were recorded in Suffolk and north Essex.

A Suffolk woman has told of the part she played in forcing The Sun to scrap Page 3 topless women.

Body positivity is a term that is bandied about a lot at the moment and that can make it sound flippant, unimportant and self indulgent, writes Kate Dickinson.

An MP has told parliament 20 people died in instances when ambulances arrived late to emergencies in East Anglia during a spell of intense pressure over the Christmas period.

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