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UK floods: Extra troops sent in to tackle flood-stricken northern England

By PA Reporters

The Government has sent a further 200 troops to help rescue efforts in flood-stricken northern England.

Some 300 military personnel had already been mobilised to help communities in Yorkshire and Lancashire struggling to tackle the flooding caused by the "unprecedented" rain seen in recent weeks.

Rivers in York, Leeds and Manchester have burst their banks, leaving properties under water and causing hundreds of people to be evacuated from their homes just days after Christmas.

The Government vowed to review flood defences as the Army was mobilised to help emergency services in mass evacuations.

David Cameron chaired a meeting of the Government's emergency Cobra committee yesterday, discussing the catastrophe with ministers, military and transport bosses, emergency services leaders and the Environment Agency.

A Number 10 spokesman said: "The decision was taken to deploy additional military personnel to ensure those affected by the flooding have the support they need, with 200 personnel being deployed alongside the existing 300 already there.

"A further 1,000 military personnel are being held in reserve should the situation worsen."

Emergency financial assistance will also be put in place for affected areas, and homes and businesses damaged by flooding will have access to the same package of support announced for those affected by Storm Desmond.

The latest bout of heavy rain has seen residents evacuated from scores of homes across the city of York, where around 3,500 properties are thought to be at risk.

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