Communities cut off after heavy rains causes flooding in Wensleydale and Swaledale

Flooding at Leyburn Fire Station on July 30.

Homes, businesses and vehicles flooded following heavy rain in Richmondshire on Tuesday with whole communities cut off following the deluge.

The torrential rain in the Leyburn and Reeth areas has been described as the heaviest in living memory.

More on the flooding from Richmondshire Today:

Flooding has caused a stretch of the road between Richmond and Reeth to collapse, while a road bridge between Grinton and Leyburn has been washed away.

The damage is likely to take months to repair and will cause major disruption for locals residents and businesses.

Flood water got into dozens of homes and businesses in Wensleydale and Swaledale.

Swaledale was cut off on Tuesday with river water flooding over roads in the Grinton area following a day of problems caused by flash flood water.

Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team volunteers and North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue crews working throughout the day and into the night to rescue stranded motorists and pump water from homes.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said it was called to 115 incidents related to flooding on Tuesday.

An elderly woman had been rescued in Leyburn after becoming trapped by rising flood water in the Brentwood area.

Several properties on Maythorne and Brentwood in Leyburn have suffered significant flooding, with firefighters having to work hard on Tuesday evening to divert the water to prevent further flooding.

Water has also got into several classrooms at Leyburn Primary School.

A number of shops, pubs and cafes in Leyburn town centre were flooded, with owners closing to mop and pump out water.

Water has also got into homes in nearby Bellerby.

The water supply has been switched off to homes and businesses in Redmire after flood water got into the supply.

A bridge on Grinton Moor has been destroyed by water leaving the route between Wensleydale and Swaledale impassable.


Bridge on Grinton Moor. Photo: Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team.

The road between Reeth and Richmond has also been closed, with Reeth and Fremington cut off and the only access to and from Grinton via Redmire.

The B6270 between Reeth and Richmond, which has suffered subsidence in recent years, has been damaged by flood water and will need major repairs.

Moor Road, near Leyburn, and the Tank Road between the Bellerby and Leyburn turn-offs were both only passable by larger vehicles on Tuesday.


The Two Dales Bakery in Reeth is one of several businesses in the village to have suffered flooding.

Firefighters were called out to dozens of incidents, despite the fire station in Leyburn being one of the buildings to have suffered flooding and retained firefighters working despite their own properties and vehicles suffering flooding.

It was a similar story in Reeth where the retained crew worked into the night despite some of their own properties at risk.

Firefighters pumping water in Brentwood, Leyburn.

Flooded businesses in Leyburn town centre.

The flooding has prompted organisers to cancel this weekend’s Ard Rock event at the Dales Bike Centre at Fremington.

A video posted by organisers shows a torrent of flood water flowing through Fremington.



One Leyburn resident said they had lived in the town for 40 years and never seen the flooding as bad.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for rain and thunderstorms affecting Richmondshire for Tuesday and Wednesday.

50mm of rain is reported to have fallen in just an hour in parts of the region this afternoon.


    • Very funny, how sensitive when people have lost everything from the homes they have lived in, some for nearly 50 years, and are now homeless. And yes, I do have a sense of humour but some things are not to be laughed at.

    • @Andrew Waites unbelievable! Suppose you won’t be bothered about people’s homes living on a top floor! Some people have lost everything, have some compassion! 😡

  1. I am so sorry to hear of the dreadful flooding in the most beautiful part of this county, my late husband & I have have had some wonderful holidays around Leyburn Reeth & all of your lovely dales my heart goes out to you all it is heartbreaking Gid bless you all

  2. Oh my goodness. We were there driving around Swaledale and in Leyburn meeting a friend last Thursday in blazing sunshine. Five lovely days in wonderful countryside. So sorry to see it like this.

  3. Really shocked to see this. I love Reeth and the local area and have been going there since I was four, nearly 40 years ago. My thoughts are with everyone in the area tonight.

  4. Thismust be so difficult. The food bank can help anyone with some emergency food supplies who are in this crisis situation from the flooding.

  5. Very upset about all this. We will be moving to the area and know it very well after dozens of visits to Swaledale and Wensleydale.
    I wish we were already there so we might help, and not so far away as we currently are.
    Our hearts go out to everyone, not least the sheep.
    What about harvests?!
    So sad.

  6. Andrew Waites, you insensitive individual. Yesterday my wife and I witnessed the heartbreaking scene of a woman desperately bailing water from her home with a bucket whilst waves of floodwater were inundating her property in Leyburn, caused by passing traffic. And today, on the news I have seen the absolute devastation caused to other properties, roads and land elsewhere in the area. People like you are not wanted on the Town Council. Do the residents of Leyburn a big favour and step aside. Shame on you.

  7. We walked through the Reeth/Grinton area last month. We met some wonderful people, who are now very much in our thoughts. Good luck to you all.

  8. We have been to Reeth and surrounding area many times. We are so sad to see the devastating effect of the heavy rain. We wish you all well.

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