The insurance bill for the floods in northern England caused by Storm Desmond is likely to reach around £520 million, insurers have said.

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) said that nearly 24,000 claims have been made for property damage, due to large-scale flooding in the region, with Cumbria the worst affected.

The organisation said that 4,000 claims had been made by businesses. And insurers have already paid out £1.7m to residential customers and £900,000 to commercial customers.

When Cumbria was hit with floods in 2009, the bill was an estimated £200m, suggesting that the damage caused this time around was much more severe and widespread. However, it is nowhere the largest insurance bill after flooding. The floods in Somerset and the Thames Valley two years ago cost around £1.3 billion, and the ones that hit South Yorkshire and Tewkesbury in 2007 cost more than £3bn.