Forecasters predict a sunny end to half-term in East Anglia after downpour

Bad weather in Cromer doesn't deter people from making the most of the North Norfolk Coast.Picture:

Bad weather in Cromer doesn't deter people from making the most of the North Norfolk Coast.Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

After the maelstrom, the calm - and maybe, eventually, some sun.

Tree fell onto a van near Great Melton. @NSRoadsPolicing

Tree fell onto a van near Great Melton. @NSRoadsPolicing - Credit: Archant

Following a grey, cold start to the half term break - and a day of dramatic downpours which saw a month's worth of rain fall in a morning - forecasters have raised the prospect of some brighter conditions.

Yesterday's storms saw roads flooded and trees toppled, as thunder and lightning rumbled overhead. Motorists on the morning commute had to contend with blocked routes and diversions.

One Suffolk driver, James Cutler, filmed a dashcam video of his route from Woodbridge to Bury St Edmunds, through water that was 10 inches high, in places. The 45 minute journey took him one hour and 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, the Lynn Ferry Service closed and trains were cancelled or delayed from Norwich to Lowestoft and across services in Suffolk.

Wattisham snatched the title for the wettest place in the country, with 53mm falling from about 4am to 11am yesterday, with Tibenham Airfield close behind with 43mm in the same period.

Firefighters were called to flooding in Great Yarmouth, Gorleston, Diss and Scottow, while fallen trees brought down cables in Frettenham, and blocked both Station Road in Great Fransham and Parkhill Fair Green near King's Lynn. A tree also fell on a caravan in Reedham, although no-one was injured.

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In another incident, the B1108 near Great Melton was blocked after a fallen tree struck a van, causing significant damage to its roof and windscreen. Again, there were no injuries.

In Ipswich, stranded motorists were freed from their cars after becoming stuck in floodwater, with two vehicles having to be towed to safety.

But while some families may have opted to hole up indoors as half term began, they will have a chance to make the most of the school break as the clouds lift towards the end of the week.

Chris Bell, forecaster at Weatherquest, said: 'Rain is expected today, particularly in the morning, but tomorrow will be much drier, although it will stay cloudy and windy. There's not much rain once we get past today.

'We are looking at temperatures of about 13C to 14C today and tomorrow because of northerly wind, but by the time we get to Saturday and Sunday it's a mixture of sunshine and clouds, with temperatures going back up to 19C or 20C.'

Despite the cloudy start to half term, dozens flocked to visitor attractions around the region in a surprisingly successful bank holiday weekend.

Ian Russell, owner of Wroxham Barns, said he felt 'chipper' after a busy three days, and encouraged families to make the most of the week regardless of the weather.

'There seems to be a good number of visitors around and we are hearing very positive comments,' he said. 'The underlying draw of Norfolk is that the range of attractions is very wide and we have a good amount of weatherproofing.

'We have some very niche attractions which, particularly if people are only here for the week, are a big pull whatever the weather.'

Benjie Cabbell Manners, owner of Amazona Zoo in Cromer, added: 'Surprisingly, the bank holiday weekend was 20pc up on last year. We've noticed that if the weather isn't forecast to be great there's normally a slight drop in visitor numbers, however, word is getting out that we have an indoor play area for the under 12s so there's more to do for children at the zoo if it's raining.'

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