Dec 30 2013
Victims of the Christmas storms were facing yet another day without power today - a week after they were cut off - despite claims by engineers the last homes had been reconnected.
Some properties in Kent were still in darkness as yet more miserable weather threatened further flooding across the already saturated ground up and down the UK.
Tens of thousands of homes across the south east of England, north Wales and Cumbria were left without electricity over the last week because of damage caused by the storms which battered the country.
Last night the Energy Networks Association (ENA) tweeted: "Engineers have this evening reconnected those who lost power due to the severe weather damage."
But Alexandr Prisyazhnyuk, 41, who lives three miles north of Canterbury, was still without power, after t rees fell on the cables connecting his home to the grid two days before Christmas.
The married father of three said he was "waiting for a miracle" and felt ignored after he saw the reports that all homes had been reconnected.
"I call UK Power every two hours and haven't had any response from them," he said.
It comes as another band of heavy rain and strong winds arrives in the UK, bringing with it a risk of flooding and disruption.
Forecasters have said the latest storm pushing in from the Atlantic will cross the UK from west to east.
The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning over fears of strong gales of up to 80mph affecting Wales, southern, western and northern England and Scotland.
It has also warned of the danger of ice patches in the South West tonight as temperatures drop to below freezing.
Matt Dobson, a senior forecaster for MeteoGroup, said although the wet and blustery conditions were " fairly normal" for this time of year, the wet ground is vulnerable to floods.
"The problem is it's coming when we've already had a lot of rain across the country, which increases the risk of flooding," he said.
"In the last 12 hours we've seen between 20mm and 50mm of rainfall across eastern parts of Northern Ireland, south-west Scotland, Cumbria and Wales, which is exceptionally wet.
"Through the day we're going to see a band of rain and gusty winds sweeping from west to east across parts of the UK."
The forecaster said most of the gusts would be between 40mph and 50mph, but could reach 60mph in some local areas.
Although tonight will be largely calm, the weather will take a turn for the worse tomorrow evening, Mr Dobson said.
"We're already looking at more rain sweeping in from the west for New Years Eve," he said
Commuters had a miserable return to work today as bad weather continued to cause havoc to road and rail travel.
A number of major road routes were affected by flooding or by fallen trees while landslips added to the problems for train travellers whose services were already disrupted by planned engineering work.
The Environment Agency (EA) have about 100 flood alerts in place in southern, western and northern England.
And the unsettled weather looks set to continue into the new year after the Met Office issued a severe weather warning for rain on New Year's Day, affecting southern England and western Scotland.
Some 1,300 properties have been flooded during the recent storms in England, the EA said.