Hundreds of families forced to flee homes as parts as towns left underwater

Severe flooding as a result of two months' rain falling in two days has led to almost 600 homes being evacuated and damage to a wildlife park.

The unseasonable deluge – feared to continue into the week – has also claimed the life of a much-loved parrot at stricken Lincolnshire Wildlife Park.

The bird had been at the centre in Friskney, Lincolnshire, for 20 years but drowned on Saturday.

The wildlife park had to close today – when normally it would have given dads free entry on Fathers' Day.

Residents in nearby Wainfleet All Saints and Thorpe Culvert have been told to leave their homes as waters continued to surge.

The RAF had to drop 270 one-tonne sandbags from helicopters after River Steeping burst its banks.

Matt Warman, Conservative MP for Boston and Skegness, said "the Environment Agency is in the process of putting together two pumps that will start taking away some quantities of water", but he was unsure when they would be up and running.

The 37-year-old politician also suggested the body and other authorities may need to consider in future what could have been done better to prevent the deluge, but "ultimately, that level of water was always going to cause problems".

"In terms of the response, we have seen an incredible working together of the agencies," he said.

"Local people should keep an eye on the police because there is still the potential for risk to homes and lives.

"But in the long term, it will always just be a huge thank you."

Lincolnshire Police have shared a list of more than 100 postcodes, all in the PE23 and PE24 area, where evacuations are possible.

The Environment Agency said the Wainfleet area experienced two months' worth of rain in just two days – with 132mm between June 10-12, which is considers "an unprecedented event".

Thousands of pounds has been raised by members of the public to help Lincolnshire Wildlife Park repair damage caused by the floods.

Steve Nichols has dedicated the last 20 years to providing a non-for-profit home to the UK's largest collection of rescued parrots and and a new collection of tigers at the centre.

"Sadly our first victim of the bad rain, she thought it best to hide in her box overnight but drowned," he said.

"This girl ( one with the yellow head) has been with me for over 20 years and as a wild bird became my mate . Gutted is the only word to explain it, sodding weather ."

And Suzie Eglon, whose partner works at the park, posted online: "After the extraordinarily heavy rainfall of June 2019 I've watched my partner and his colleagues (including the owner) go above and beyond in extreme weather to ensure the safety of 1000's of animals in their care.

"They've been soaked to skin, wrung out their socks despite wearing waterproofs and wellies and in one case stripped to their pants to redirect water pouring in from a well. They've done this with smiles on their faces and without complaint for several days now.

"The water flow is under control but the park remains closed until the safety and enjoyment of visitors can be assured once more."

A spokesman for the park said: "A massive thank you to everyone for showing concern towards the fact that the park is flooded and so has to remain closed.

"We are overwhelmed by the many kind gestures of help and support.

"We will do our utmost to get things sorted and open back up again as soon as possible."

"As many of you have mentioned we are losing money daily towards our everyday upkeep of the animals.

"As you can see the park is simply impassable to customers right just now."

Met Office has issued new yellow weather warnings for Tuesday and Wednesday.

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