DESPITE flood warnings being lifted for Andover the threat and troubles remain for villages in the Bourne Valley area.

Vernham Dean, Upton, Stoke and St Mary Bourne are continuing to battle with flood waters which have caused havoc in and between these villages.

A number of homes in Vernham Dean have become inundated with water while the local school has also been closed with the village’s playing fields also remaining out of action.

Vernham Dean parish council chairman John Garbutt said: “The water is at last going down but we still have a number of homes with flooding of the ground floor and cellars which has caused considerable damage.

“This village has won the Village of the Year award and what impressed the judges was the tremendous community spirit and it has shown itself again over this difficult period of flooding here.

“Everyone was willing to help and has done so much, going the extra mile, and it was that work that helped, in my opinion, save the school, redirecting the flow of water away from the school and into the playing fields.”

The council has been working with the emergency services, military, Environment Agency, Hampshire County Council and other multiagency partners along with parish councils and local flood groups to respond to the flooding across the region.

Councillor Ian Carr, leader of the council, said: “Staff have been working around the clock to help our residents and businesses through this difficult time. Inevitably, we can’t fight the elements and sadly in some cases property and businesses have been flooded.

“I have great sympathy with those affected by the worst rainfall in centuries and will continue to do all we can to manage the situation and help those affected.

“Finally, we are getting some small respite from the weather, though groundwater will remain an issue for some time.”

Agencies across Hampshire are now working together to plan a clean-up operation which the council will keep residents and business informed of as the operation moves into gear.