WORRIED residents and businesses were placed on high alert yesterday following flood warnings along the River Dee.
Flooding occurred in areas of Chester which run closely to the river, with some businesses forced to stop trading for the day and teams from Cheshire West and Chester Council’s (CWaC) highways and Streetscene departments lining the river with up to 1,000 sandbags.
The Groves area of the city, a popular tourist spot running alongside the River Dee, was flooded and boats were pulled from their moorings.
Areas alerted to the risk of flooding included the Greyhound Retail Park, Sealand Industrial Estate, properties off Sealand Road, New Crane Street and Watergate Square as well as Chester Racecourse.
Jacob Dychton, deputy manager at The Boathouse pub, which was affected by the high water at The Groves, said yesterday: “We were completely flooded. It was about 20cm deep in the pub, quite a lot.
“I have been working with the manager, head chef and all the other staff to try to clean it all out to save as much as possible.
“We won’t be opening this evening but we will try to be open tomorrow night.
“We have a big carpet area though, so we have to change that before we can open. We are hoping to get that done by tomorrow.”
Vicky Thomas, spokesman for the King’s School, which has rowing boats moored along the banks of the Dee, near to The Groves, said: “The river is as high as the staff have ever seen.
“It is a metre away from the doors of The Boathouse but it hasn’t gone into The Boathouse.”
water levels rose, along with Chester Golf Club. In response to the warnings, CWaC opened its emergency incident room.
CWaC spokesman Ian Callister said: “Our services are on standby throughout the duration of these flood warnings and our highways and streetscene teams have set about the task of placing sandbags in the appropriate places.
“We continue to liaise with the emergency services throughout the bad weather forecast and we will be taking the appropriate courses of action.
“It is hoped there won’t be any serious flooding issues, but we have been and continue to remain prepared.”
As well as potential flooding the Met Office has issued warnings about high winds, which are expected to reach 80mph until the weekend.
The Environment Agency and Met Office are both forecasting gale force winds and large waves will combine with spring tides this weekend.
The outcome could be a large surge that will hit the country in the coming days, bringing a risk of coastal flooding.