If climate change was not enough, insurers face yet another threat as they try to stem a tide of flood claims caused by paving front gardens.

Paving mania has taken over parts of the country as residents demand off-street parking. But, this puts extra pressure on drains which are more likely to overflow.

A report from the London Assembly reveals the city has lost two thirds of its front gardens - an area equal to 22 times the size of Hyde Park.

Environmentalists have called for an end to the paving craze and say birds and insects should take precedence over the family motor.