Billing Aquadrome holiday park evacuated over floods

More than 1,000 people have been forced to leave their homes due to flooding at a caravan park in Northamptonshire.

Billing Aquadrome, in the Nene Valley, near Northampton, has more than 1,000 residents and also hosts holidaymakers.

The Environment Agency issued a flood warning because heavy rain was predicted overnight and said the site should be cleared.

People without accommodation are being housed at an emergency shelter.

General manager Peter Angeledis said the site began to be cleared shortly after 16:00 BST.

He said he did not expect the site to be severely damaged, or for flooding to affect the whole area.

Leisure centre stay

Nearby caravan park Cogenhoe Mill, a smaller site with a mix of residential and holiday homes, began evacuating at the weekend.

Northamptonshire Police said people unable to return home or stay with family and friends were being offered accommodation at Lings Forum leisure centre.

Food is being provided by the Salvation Army and car parking is available at Weston Favell shopping centre.

Resident Nik Harding told the BBC she was unable to stay at Lings Forum because her son has autism and "would not be able to cope" with the numbers of people.

He and his sibling are staying with relatives, while Ms Harding, her partner and dog are with other family members on the "other side of Bedfordshire".

"We are really worried about our home - which is only natural," she said.

"I think there are going to be a lot of distraught people once the damage has been assessed."

Insp Sarah Johnson said: "We have a police presence at both sites to offer reassurance and support to members of the public and will also have dedicated patrols in both areas overnight.

"The position will be kept under constant review and regular updates will be provided to residents."

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