Developing

East Lyng turned into Somerset ghost village by UK floods

The small Somerset parish village of East Lyng has been hit hard by the recent floods - and these remarkable comparison shots show the extent of the devastation.

The rural village has become a ghost town in the past two weeks, as flood waters rose to an incredible 8ft, forcing families and businesses to evacuate.

On some streets in East Lyng, properties have been submerged in murky water up to their roof lines.

Residents have had to escape to hotels and set up businesses elsewhere to deal with the disastrous consequences.

Agricultural contractor Lesley Webber, 52, lives in a 120-year-old property in East Lyng, which has never flooded before.

Lesley has spent a week working tirelessly to protect her house by constructing a wall of sandbags, but water is now seeping up through her floorboards.

'It is not coming in from the outside because we protected that, now it is coming up through the floor,' she said.

The area surrounding Lesley Webber's home in East Lyng has been almost completely submerged. (SWNS)

Under water: At Willow House in East Lyng, water levels are half way up the front door. (SWNS)

'We have it slowly seeping through, underneath the floorboards, it's just devastating.

'It is horrible because in a sense to be flooded is the most awful thing to happen to anybody but we don't know if we are going to be flooded or not.

 

[VIDEO: 'Sandblaggers' charge flood victims £50 per sandbag]


'It is like a ticking time bomb. The water is getting up now, we are just looking at the levels, and then looking at the sandbags and the pumps and hoping it keeps it all out.

'We have a 10-bag high defence all around our house and the water is up to bag number eight now.

'Our next door neighbours were forced to leave last week because the water rose to about three quarters of the way up their front door, it was horrible.


'We are higher than them, probably one of the highest houses in the village.

'This house is 120-years-old and has not flooded at all in that time.

Just a handful of the village's 150 residents are thought to have remained in their homes.

 

[VIDEO: Checking in with flood-hit viewers]


The incredible before and after pictures reveal the astonishing rise of the water levels.

The first picture shows the Somerset Levels Basket Centre on the A361 between Burrowbridge and West Lyng in normal conditions.

The second images shows the road today - under 8ft of water - with the workshop and showroom submerged up to its roof.

A house near Moorland, in Somerset, where a house owner has built his own defences (PA)
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Press Association | Photo by PA / PA
Fri, Feb 14, 2014 10:00 GMT

A huge wood machining factory behind the shop is also completely submerged, alongside the offices of a property company next door.

The company was forced to move six miles away to Langport in 2012, after flooding left their shop drenched in 4ft of water.

In a statement on their website last year, owner Ruth said: 'There has been flooding to our showrooms several times - when we have had to move our Baskets to another building.

'This problem improved for a number of years but unfortunately the winter of 2012/13 was extremely bad with levels of up to 4 foot of floodwater in the premises for many weeks at a time.

'This put our future at our Burrowbridge premises in jeopardy, we had been here for over 70 years, and we had to leave.'

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