The Abingdon Blog

The Abingdon Blog is a photo record of events and places in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, started on January 1st 2006.

Thursday, 26 July 2007

Flood Analysis

The Abingdon Herald appeared today with five pages of flood pictures.

There has also been the national coverage:

On Tuesay the Daily Telegraph said 'The Thames in Abingdon, Oxon, rose 3ft in less than 12 hours to a "perilously high" level'

In the Independent yesterday 'There was an apocalyptic feeling in the town of Abingdon ...'

There are still sandbags in the centre of town, some way above the current level of the river. But town people know there is the third town centre river to consider: the River Stert. It runs through an old culvert, and might run awry if pushed back by a high River Thames. Earlier, it too broke its banks upstream.

The River Thames is still high today. Water was washing back up the River Ock towards St. Helens Mill - one of the first places to be evacuated at the weekend.

Last weekend the Ock was full of foam and fury. But not now it flows calmly, draining its flood plain.

The River Thames is also expected to go down in the next couple of days.

This Environment Agency Map will need to be redrawn. It is the map people are shown when doing local area searches before moving house. The River Ock reached further than places shown as 'extreme flood' on this map, in areas such as: Ock Street, Spring Road, Marcham Road, Mill Road, Wordsworth Road, Coleridge Road, and all round the Ladygrove Estate. Fortuneately, the Thames and Stert did not get to their pale blue extremes.

The trouble is the pattern could be different next time. So the instant reaction is to improve the River Ock defences. Perhaps the re-built Wilts and Berks canal could act as a drainage channel from the Ock to other farmland and the Thames. Who knows? But what if next time a flash flood causes more problems from the River Stert?


Blogger Christine Walker said...

Oh no! Your beautiful city! I hope everyone was kept safe.

27 July 2007 03:18  
Blogger Christine Walker said...

Sorry I haven't been keeping up. I'm the full time caregiver for my mom who is 96 and has Alzheimer's. I've been so busy that I let slip some of the things I really enjoy doing. I need to get back to them....

27 July 2007 03:34  
Blogger JSP Safety Products said...

Great blog - love it. I used to live in Bailie Close, down Caldecott Road, and although i've not moved far away, it's great to see someone posting about it...

27 July 2007 14:32  
Blogger Loeki said...

Your blog has been very useful to me the past week or so: I will be spending my holidays in Abingdon starting this sunday, and this way I could keep an eye on the flood-news.

28 July 2007 15:59  
Anonymous Lisa (Abbadonian) said...

The river stert, why does it not appear on any maps it is a river after all. I know many people who can not forget about the river as it runs at the back of my parents house in Abingdon and yes we were fighting the floods on Friday 20th July luckily by 5am Saturday 21st July the water had all gone as if nothing had happened but it was very scarey when the 2 roads in question turned into rivers.

28 July 2007 22:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a former Abingdon resident, I expect my previous home (Hermitage Road) was flooded - if so, my commiserations to the current owners, and also to all the other Abingdon residents who have suffered.
I'm wondering whether, in the aftermath of necessary repairs,the insureres (builders) will be incorporating flood defences in their repairs - e.g. house and garage door barriers, raised electrical sockets, flood-proof plaster, etc. And if not, why not? Perhaps this is something the Abingdon Herals could investigate and campaign for?

29 July 2007 09:38  
Blogger back streeter said...

Thanks for the comments. Christine - sorry to hear about your mom. Lisa - The Stert is between a stream and a river really. It rises somewhere near Boars Hill and goes under the town centre. With so much flooding people along Stert Street needed some sandbags just in case (insurance).

Quite agree about built-in flood protection. That should be a growth area. Also River Ock flood defences.

30 July 2007 22:54  

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