Ryedale 'led the way' in protecting properties from flooding during storm Barbet.

Although the rainfall from storm Babet was significantly less locally than in other parts of the UK, particularly Scotland, the water level at Pickering’s upstream bund (flood storage area) in Newtondale reached a record level of 3.534m at 8.30am on Saturday.

Mike Potter, who  played a leading role in Pickering flood prevention, said: "Levels through the town peaked a few hours later, but were held at a level that didn't flood properties because around 7000 m3 of water was being temporarily stored upstream instead. The bund has a total capacity of 120,000m3, so lots of capacity was left.

"The bund quietly did its job to protect the town again for the 50th time since completion in September 2015, and with no more rain forecast for a couple of days, water levels have gradually reduced. That’s the advantage of Slowing the Flow. However, it must be remembered that the bund only provides protection from a 1:25 year event and will at some point fill to capacity and overtop.

"It was an uphill battle with the 'authorities' to get this flood defence funded and built ('you can't have the money because there's no evidence it'll work!!'), but once I knew the concept of Natural Flood Management and 'working with natural processes', I was always convinced this wasn't just about protecting Pickering, but that the same concept could be used anywhere. Hence the most satisfying aspect is that similar upstream Flood Storage Areas have now been accepted by the Environment Agency and are being built in several places, now that Pickering has provided the evidence that it works and is extremely cost effective. Ryedale leads the way yet again."

 In Scarborough, Marine Drive was closed on Friday and Saturday due to overlapping seawater and street furniture being blown around in high winds, as emergency services urged people to stay away from the coast.

Two shows at Scarborough Spa as Spa Road were also closed due to the risk of overtopping. The cliff lift is also out of action because of the high winds.

Warnings were issued for the River Rye, River Seven and Upper River Derwent which includes Old Malton, and Priorpot Beck in Norton The EA also closed the County Bridge in Malton.

North Yorkshire Police warned motorists to avoid making any non-essential journeys and to steer clear of flood water and other high-risk areas such as the coast, where waves are posing a danger to vehicles and pedestrians.

Superintendent Rachel Wood said: “Where temporary road closures have been put in place due to flooding or over-topping waves from the sea, it is essential to follow the diversions for the safety of everyone involved.

“If you find yourself stuck in flood water or in any other dangerous situations as a result of the storm, please make sure the emergency services are called by dialling 999.

“Please avoid using 999 for any non-emergency issues to ensure the emergency services can respond as quickly as possible to any serious incidents that may occur.”