Darrin, it is probably true about the pumping station. Certainly of the rivers had been dredged and the silt not dumped in the estuary as it was last time it was dredged, it would not have stopped the flooding but it probably would not have been as bad.
Part of the reason why rivers have not been dredged is because the Royal Society For the Protection of Birds and other bunny huggers, badger protectors and vole victors said it would damage their habitat. Also the European Union makes many of the laws over wildlife protection. Those making the laws wouldn't know a rat from a rabbit let alone what is for the best for the land.
Floodin is throughout the country, towns and village around the River Thames and the River Severn and several others are flooded water tables are so high that water is just spouting out the ground.
Britain is wet and getting wetter. The government want to build thousands more houses which means less run off leading to more flooding.