PROPERTIES and businesses were left underwater, roads and railways were blocked and people were rescued as heavy rainfall led to flooding and burst river banks across west Dorset.

Bridport took the full force of the flooding on Monday - the River Brit burst its banks and overflowed, causing widespread chaos in the surrounding area - and surrounding rural communities were also badly affected.

The A35 was closed between Bridport and Dorchester due to flooding at the Esso petrol station near the East Road roundabout.

The B3157 Jurassic Coast Road was also closed due to flooding in Burton Bradstock.

St Swithins Road and North Allington in Bridport were being carefully monitored by the town council as drivers were told to pass through the floodwater "super slowly".

Trains between Axminster and Yeovil were cancelled due to heavy flooding on the railway line.

Two people had to be rescued from a car which became trapped in fast-flowing water in Whitchurch Canonicorum.

Dorset Echo: Two people were rescued by inflatable boat after being trapped in their car in floodwaterTwo people were rescued by inflatable boat after being trapped in their car in floodwater (Image: Charmouth Fire Station)

Firefighters from Bridport and Charmouth rescued the pair using an inflatable boat.

The pitch and clubhouse at Bridport Football Club were left submerged.

The flooding has meant that the club have had to cancel all their functions this week and has put Saturday’s home game against Elburton Villa on Saturday, December 9, under threat.

Adrian Scadding, the club’s chairman discovered the flooding after cameras set up to keep an eye on the clubhouse stopped working and went by to check the condition of the site on his way to work.

Dorset Echo: Flooding at Bridport football ClubFlooding at Bridport football Club (Image: Graham Hunt Photography)

He said: “The river burst its banks and the pitch is two feet under water. It has also come into the clubhouse which has about 8 inches throughout.

“I had to wade my way through the clubhouse.

“We have had to cancel all our events this week. We had something on every night.

“It is going to be a busy week of cleaning up it is a nightmare.”

A garden centre in Bridport was also forced to close after it became covered in as much as 3ft of water in some places.

The Groves Nursery and Garden Centre on West Bay Road was closed after the River Brit burst its banks.

Dorset Echo: The Groves Garden Centre in BridportThe Groves Garden Centre in Bridport (Image: The Groves)

Managing Director Charlie Groves said: "It is quite a lot of water. It is all over our outdoor area.

"It didn't look too bad when I went into the shop, but then I drove to the bottom and our lower car park and greenhouses are under about 3ft of water. It is over the wellies.

"Thankfully it is just the outside area and we have our team and an electrician here helping out.

"We decided to close just because we have hardly any parking and just to be on the safe side. 

"Hopefully it is not too much damage, the plants don't seem to mind."

A village lane in Chideock was also turned into a "raging muddy river" by the floods.

Dorset Echo: Seahill Lane in ChideockSeahill Lane in Chideock (Image: Stuart Higgins)

Seahill Lane between Chideock and Seatown was flooded after heavy rainfall hit the villages.

Chideock resident Stuart Higgins said: "The road leading down to the Anchor pub at Seatown was turned into a raging muddy and debris-filled river by the overnight flooding.

"Seahill Lane was flooded to a depth of at least 12 inches as drains could not cope with the volume of water and a manhole cover was lifted. "