Statement following the COBR meeting (Sunday 16 February) on the floods and severe weather affecting parts of the UK.

The Prime Minister said:

At this evening’s COBR I received an update on the weather conditions tonight and over the coming days. After a thankfully calm day today, some rain is expected at times next week, though not to the levels we have seen. But this additional rainfall will add to high groundwater levels and will impact slow feeding rivers over the days ahead.

I am hopeful that the work to strengthen long-term flood defences, and the emergency measures which have been put in place over recent days and weeks will mean that we can minimise the number of homes and businesses affected by the latest high water levels.

The recent flooding has been a tragedy for all those affected and my thoughts are with them. While it is of no comfort to those indi viduals, over 1.3 million other homes have been protected since December and we will continue to invest in flood defence measures to protect even more.

Extensive efforts to protect and repair properties and infrastructure are ongoing by many thousands of people among agencies, the military and the emergency services. I speak for us all when I thank them profusely for their hard work.

Read about the UK government response to the ongoing severe weather and flooding.