Around 70 people and 20 horses had to be rescued from floods in Lancashire as heavy rains caused widespread flooding.
Lancashire Constabulary said emergency services, the Environment Agency and Lancaster City Council had received more than 500 flood-related calls, attended more than 100 incidents and rescued more than 70 people from flood incidents. Nearly 30 people have been evacuated from their homes.
People were urged not to call emergency services unless there was a threat to life as crews continued to respond to a backlog of incidents.
The Met Office said around 1.7in of rain had fallen in 24 hours in parts of Lancashire, while further north in Cumbria around half a month’s rain, 3.5in, was recorded in 36 hours at Shap.
Meanwhile the deluge is set to continue on Thursday with snow forecast to join the heavy rain and strong winds.
Up to 5cm of snow is likely for many parts of Britain north of the border and up to 20cm on the highest ground the Met Office said. A yellow severe weather warning is in place until 1pm on Thursday.
A yellow severe weather warning for heavy rain for southern Scotland, northern England and north west Wales was in force until 9am this morning. An identical alert was in place for strong winds across most of England, also expiring on Thursday morning.
Rail operator Northern tweeted that flooding had stopped services between Lancaster and Morecambe, Carlisle, Oxenholme and Windermere.
A southbound stretch of the M6 in south Cumbria was reduced to one lane on Wednesday night and into Thursday morning, while North Yorkshire Police said “a number of vehicles” had been recovered from floodwaters in the Yorkshire Dales as the A65 was closed.
In the Highlands rail passengers are facing disruption after three landslips following heavy rain forced the cancellation of some services.
Train services from Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh and Wick have been affected, with the line blocked between the Highland capital and Beauly.
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has issued flood alerts for Dumfries and Galloway and the Borders.
South of the border there are seven flood warnings in force, mostly in north west England, and 19 flood alerts. A yellow warning for rain was also in place for parts of Northern Ireland on Wednesday.