HOMES near the River Thame at Dorchester and nearby Overy are expected to flood, according to the Environment Agency, which has tonight issued a flood warning for the area.

Householders are being advised to take immediate action to make sure they are safe and to take measures to protect their homes after river levels rose following heavy rain overnight.

This is the fourth stretch of river in Oxfordshire made subject to a flood warning, the second stage of the agency's three-stage flooding risk code system.

Flood warnings also apply on the River Thames from Buscot Wick to Shifford, including Kelmscott and Radcot; the Thames from Newbrdige to Kings Lock, north-west of Oxford, including Northmoor, Stanton Harcourt, Bablock Hythe, Eynsham, Swinford; and the River Cherwell from Lower Heyford to Hampton Poyle, near Kidlington.

Flood alerts, the first stage of the risk code system, warning that flooding is possible and householders should be prepared, are in force on more than a dozen other rivers and brooks in the county, including the Thames at Oxford, Abingdon and Wallingford.

For the latest information, see the Environment Agency website or call the Floodline on 0845 988 1188.