Residents in a Nottinghamshire town hit hard by floods caused by Storm Babet have said they are angered by the lack of action taken to protect them and their homes.

Homeowners in Darrel Road in Retford were evacuated in the early hours of Saturday morning due to rising water from the nearby River Idle.

Some have since returned to their water-damaged properties but have said more should have been done to protect against the elements.

They have also criticised a visit by the Environment Secretary, Therese Coffey, who visited the road on Monday, with one resident describing it as an attempt to “polish her halo”.

Kevin Maunder, 72, said it had flooded almost every year of the 48 he had lived in the street but this year was the worst he had seen, with the grandfather of four raising concerns for the future and the impact of climate change.

He said: “This year has been the worst year there’s ever been. It’s the first year it’s come across the road, but it’s progressively over the last number of years gotten worse, it’s come higher and higher up into the houses opposite and onto the street.

“This year was a one-off event so they say, but I don’t believe it will be a one-off event.

“Planning for the future has got to be done. It’s never been in my house before. It’s never been in a lot of the houses on this side of the street before.

“The world is changing, the climate is changing. It’s about time people started thinking.

“I’m thinking not for today, not for tomorrow, but thinking for my grandkids, thinking for the future.”

Mr Maunder also raised concerns over raw sewage in the water and suggested many residents may have to disinfect their homes before returning to them.

Autumn weather October 22nd 2023
Flooding in Retford, seen here on Sunday, has caused damage to homes (Joe Giddens/PA)

The street and its residents were visited by Ms Coffey on Monday but Mr Maunder questioned where the money on flood defences had been spent.

He said: “She was just here to polish her halo. Because (she said) ‘I will promise you billions, we’ve spent billions’, but you’ve done nothing, so where have you spent the billions?

“I’m sorry, (she) fielded questions, time after time after time.

“48 years and nothing has been done. So do you think something will ever be done? I don’t.”

One resident, who did not wish to be named, was preparing for further rain on Tuesday, after being woken by police at 2.30am on Saturday telling him he needed to evacuate.

He was using carpet, a tent, and bags of soil and sand to stem the flow of any further water, with a yellow weather warning for rain in place for the East Midlands and Yorkshire & Humber until 4pm.

He said sandbags had sold out and those that had previously been promised had not been delivered.

He said: “It’s been horrific. We have had no help from anybody. I think the MP came up a couple of times, he’s tried his best I suppose.

“The secretary of state came yesterday for 20 minutes, I saw it on the news. There wasn’t any help at all and I don’t think we got any straight answers.

“I think it’s ridiculous that it keeps happening, and there’s no communication.

“The weather forecast predicted this and the amount of rainfall, so there is no pre-empting.

“This could have been avoided if they checked the weather forecast.”

A spokesperson for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said: “Following the unprecedented rainfall in Retford, the Environment Secretary visited the area to meet with local people, MPs, councillors and Environment Agency staff members to assess the situation.

“The significant amount of funding put into flood defences demonstrates how seriously flooding is taken with over 374,000 homes better protected since 2015, and we’re going even further by delivering a record £5.2 billion investment to better protect hundreds of thousands more.”