Flash floods cause disruption as heavy rain falls across the West Midlands

Heavy rain caused flash flooding and delays on roads across the West Midlands - and led to a football match being called off.

Flash flooding on Bescot Crescent near Walsall's stadium
Flash flooding on Bescot Crescent near Walsall's stadium

The harsh weather caused temporary flooding on key routes across the region, including on the M5 where there were 45-minute delays as a lane was closed northbound at Junction 2 for Oldbury.

Downpours also led to flooding on the railway line between Birmingham New Street and Coventry.

And Walsall's pre-season friendly with Black Country rivals West Brom at the Banks's Stadium had to be abandoned because of a waterlogged pitch.

Heavy rain and thunder arrived on Wednesday afternoon as the sunny weather of the previous week was replaced by humidity and storms.

The waterlogged pitch at The Banks's Stadium

The storms had been forecast for several days, with a a yellow weather warning issued by the Met Office covering all of the West Midlands and Staffordshire from 9am on Wednesday through to 6am on Thursday.

Express & Star digital sports journalist Luke Hatfield was on his way to Walsall to cover the match when he was caught in torrential rain on the M6 at around 5.30pm.

"It was absolutely battering down and there was standing water on the hard shoulder and fast lane of the M6," he explained.

"I was driving northbound at the time and it was slow from Birmingham up to Walsall but it was the same both sides.

"There were two or three cracks of thunder as I was driving up but it was much better by the time it came to driving home."

Flooding on Milton Street in Palfrey, Walsall. Photo: Jav Yonus

The worst of the water had cleared by 7pm and the M5 was fully back open but delays remained, with the smart motorway on the M6 restricting drivers to 40mph.

Disruption continued on local roads across the region as drains struggled to cope with the deluge.

In Handsworth, flash flooding affected on Rookery Road around the junction with Albert Road. Buses were diverted along Newbury Lane due to flooding on Martley Road, on the Lion Farm estate in Oldbury.

On the A461 Walsall Road, around Boatmans Lane in Walsall Wood, vehicles were queuing due to surface water and "massive flooding" was reported on social media on Racecourse Lane in Stourbridge and outside the Foley Arms.

Speeds on the M6 were restricted to 40mph at 7.15pm by the smart motorway

Carrington Road on Friar Park, Wednesbury, was flooded along with the double-roundabouts on Hydes Road, while Heath Road in Darlaston was covered in water along with Walstead Road coming from Joseph Leckie School near Bescot Stadium.

And there was further flooding on Milton Street in the Palfrey area of Walsall – with water heading up the paths to people's homes and gardens due to blocked drains.

The RAC and Highways England advised drivers to be particularly cautious in the rain.

They warned motorists to leave a larger gap than normal between the car in front of them when stopping.

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