RESIDENTS of a tiny north Cumbrian village rallied together as flood water swept through a neighbour’s garden and home.

Families in the village of Cumwhinton emerged as flood heroes when they went to the rescue of a neighbour, who was away from home, when a deluge of murky brown water enveloped their garden and part of the downstairs of their cottage.

As firemen from Carlisle East and Lazonby spent most of Saturday pumping out water from gardens and garages in the village, neighbours donned wellies and waterproofs and armed with buckets, a pump and generator, saved the neighbour’s garden and home from further damage.

Mike and Dawn Crowther and 10-year-old daughter Jasmine sprang into action when the postman delivering mail to their front door told them that the fire brigade were pumping out water from their next-door neighbour’s garden.

“When we got there the fire brigade were keen on breaking down the front door, but we managed to get in touch with the owner and obtain a key, but when the door was opened flood water rushed out,” said Mr Crowther.

“There was nearly three inches of water on the ground floor of the cottage, but easily one-and-a-half feet of water in the garden itself. Another neighbour brought round a pump and generator and others helped to move the furniture up by a foot. The kitchen itself had been saved because of a step leading into it from the hall,” added Mike.

Jasmine was praised by firemen for her efforts in using a bucket to bail water out of the cottage and depositing it onto the nearby road.

“It took about three or four hours to get the water out. The firemen left and we were checking every two hours, which was just as well as the water rose again,” said Mrs Crowther.

“We checked every two hours as it was torrential rain. We can only think the water came off the fields, and drains were popping with the force of the water,” added Mr Crowther.

The family said other homes in the village had also been affected with flooded gardens and garages.

Carlisle East Fire Station said appliances were mobilised to reports of flooding in Cumwhinton on Saturday at around 7am when crews discovered six flooded properties that required pumping out, and they achieved this using a combination of the main pump, and large portable pumps.

Later that day fire crews posted going to the aid of a person stuck in a car in flood water at Little Corby. Crews helped remove the car and occupants from the water.

They also rescued what they believe may be water voles or field mice from the fast flowing water. “They had a lucky escape anyway... but please do not drive through flood water, it is very dangerous to both yourself, and our crews. Only make essential journeys, and do not take risks with water,” said the post.

Yesterday, a flood alert in the lower River Eden was posted by the Environment Agency River, who stated levels had risen at the Linstock river gauge as a result of heavy rainfall. Consequently, flooding of low lying land and roads was expected until later today.

Low lying land and roads in the Crosby-on-Eden, Linstock, Carlisle and Rockcliffe areas were at risk. High river levels were also possible on the River Eden, River Caldew, River Petteril, Durranhill Beck, Brunstock Beck, Gosling Sike, Little Caldew, Parham Beck, Rockcliffe Beck and their tributaries. They expected river levels to remain high until later this afternoon.

Agency staff would be closely monitoring the situation, and advised the public to avoid using low lying footpaths and roads near local watercourses.