SOLDIERS posted throughout Worcester to help in the flood efforts are being pulled back as river levels drop in the city.

After the deployed soldiers from the 1st Battalion The Royal Irish Regiment, based in Shropshire, helped map and reach the county's vulnerable people and communities, the Worcestershire Silver Tactical Co-ordinating group decided it was time to scale back their duties.

The most high profile military operation, the shuttle truck in Upton also known as the Upton Express, will remain in operation for the next few days until it is safe to pass without assistance, but the soldiers are prepared to spring back into action should the adverse weather conditions get any worse.

Speaking on behalf of the Tactical Co-ordinating Group, which involves The Environment Agency, Worcestershire County and District Councils, Public Health England, Worcestershire Health and Care Trust, Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service, West Midlands Ambulance Service and West Mercia Police, chair Superintendent Kevin Purcell said the situation was improving.

He said: “We no longer need the support of the Army.

"On behalf all the agencies, I would like to thank them for their invaluable help, skills and manpower. They have made a huge difference to the agencies’ ability to keep people safe and the county moving.

"Current information from the Environment Agency shows it is unlikely river levels will go back up to the peaks we saw last week, however they may take a while to go back to the levels we normally see at this time of the year.

“If there are further episodes of heavy rain that push river levels back, we can again consider using the