The mayor of Basingstoke is "deeply saddened" by catastrophic flooding in Basingstoke's twin town of Euskirchen.

Cllr Onnalee Cubitt said that the "many connections forged between our two towns... made the awful scenes all the more poignant".

She also said she would be writing to the mayor of Euskirchen to send "heartfelt condolences".

As previously reported, Basingstoke's twin town is at the epicentre of what is being described as the worst German flooding in two generations.

The Times has reported that 15 people have died from Euskirchen, with 40 people from the area missing.

Several hundred more from the wider region are unaccounted for.

The town, which has a population of around 55,000, is located just to the south west of Cologne

Storms across parts of western Europe last week caused rivers and reservoirs to burst their banks, resulting in several flash floods as rain-soaked soil failed to absorb any more water.

Now, a massive clean-up operation is underway as the water levels recede.

Speaking on Monday, the mayor of Basingstoke and Deane, Cllr Onnalee Cubitt, said: "Our hearts go out to the people of our twin town Euskirchen after news of the impact of the horrific floods there.

"We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life and devastation the community is suffering, together with other areas in Germany and Belgium.

“Basingstoke has been twinned with Euskirchen since 1986 and there have been many connections forged and visits made between our two towns.

"This has made the awful scenes we saw unfolding on the news all the more poignant.

"I will be writing to the Mayor of Euskirchen to send our heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of those who have been killed and deepest sympathy to all whose lives have been affected.

"Our thoughts are very much with the people of our twin town and all the other communities affected.”

Meanwhile, Kevin Laing, chair of Basingstoke Voluntary Sports Council, an organisation that co-ordinates an annual festival of sport between the twinned towns, said: "Our groups have been in touch with German exchange partners to wish them all the best in these difficult circumstances."

Meanwhile, whilst Basingstoke's other twin town of Braine L'Alleud, Belgium, escaped the worst of the flooding, residents came together to fill five trucks worth of donations for those affected.

Food, drinks, clothes, equipment and baby clothes are among the donations dropped off at the Fromton restaurant. Its Facebook post calling for donations was quickly shared over 500 times, according to news website DH, with the trucks taking two hours longer to leave because of the volume of donations.

“We created a huge traffic jam in Braine-l'Alleud! We did not expect such a large number of people who came to bring bags for the victims.

"Five trucks in all left for the crisis centers which collect the donations," owner Sarah Wibert told DH.