Summer's rainfall the highest for 100 years in Leicestershire
This summer has been the wettest for 100 years.
Rain has consistently battered the county over the past three months – with a freak storm in June alone causing almost half a month's worth to fall in just an hour.
Yesterday, Mercury weatherman Dave Mutton said 373.2mm (14in) of rain had fallen in Leicestershire during June, July and August, making it the soggiest summer since 1912. A typical summer would see about 170mm.
He said: "We had the wettest April since records began and now the wettest summer for 100 years.
"It's hard to say why, but some might argue global warming – it'll be interesting to see if this kind of weather becomes the norm."
In June, extreme weather saw fire crews rescuing several motorists who had climbed on to the roofs of their cars to escape gushing floodwaters.
The anomalies continued with a tornado which ripped through the county and hailstones the size of golf balls which peppered homes and cars.
On one day alone, the fire service dealt with more than 400 incidents related to wet weather.
A fire service spokesman said: "The service dealt with an unusually high volume of calls because of storms in June and July.
"Our fire control operators dealt with more than 400 calls on June 28, when the wet weather was at its peak."
Met Office spokesman Dave Britton confirmed that rain had been unusually high and said: "We're more likely to see these sorts of extremes due to global warming."
The uncharacteristic weather has affected more than just the sales of umbrellas and wellies.
Many businesses have reported financial losses.
Alan and Carol Ludlam, who run a pick-your-own fruit business at Cattows Farm, in Heather, said they had lost about £50,000 due to the extreme rainfall.
Carol said their entire crop of strawberries and asparagus had been destroyed.
"It's been a horrendous season," she said. "I haven't eaten one bowl of our strawberries.
"At the start of the season they weren't getting enough sun when they were in the white stage, so they never ripened.
"Then, the strawberries were being constantly peppered with rain so they bruised and went brown – they were ruined.
"That income usually supports us for the year, but we've not had anything from it."
While the rain has meant a gloomy summer for some, water companies said the excessive downpours had bolstered reservoir supplies.
Severn Trent said Swithland Reservoir was full – almost double the level it would expect at this time of year.
Its other site in Cropston is 86 per cent full, compared with the usual 67 per cent.
A Severn Trent spokeswoman said: "We're way above our target water levels for this time of year.
"Cropston is very healthy and Swithland is at capacity."
Anglian Water, which operates Rutland Water, said it was 96 per cent full.
A spokesman said: "We would expect somewhere between 85 and 88 per cent going into this time of year – the back end of summer – so for us it's good news that we're holding more than usual."