today oxford is on a high flood alert.
for those of you that read my post on friday you’ll know that it has been raining incessantly here in oxford. its been raining literally day after day and now its started flooding in areas of england. warwickshire, worcestershire, gloucestershire, berkshire and oxfordshire are the worst affected and apparantly the worst is yet to come.
the river avon, that runs through stratford has burst its banks, as have the rivers severn and ock and the thames is about to do the same in parts. as with these crises, the flood isn’t the end of the problem, areas of cheltenham and gloucester have had their water turned off and are about to lose their electricity too.
charlotte’s mom lives in cheltenham and she’s filled the bath and is cooking the food to prepare. apparantly they will be without water for a minimum of 7 days. we’ve invited her to come over, but she’s going to see how it goes. if the water shortage lasts any longer or becomes unbearable then she’ll probably come. that is if oxford isn’t in a worse situation by then.
oxford, itself, hasn’t flooded yet, but neighbouring towns of abingdon and witney have. oxford is extremely vulnarable because the thames runs right through it and in fact runs right by our house. we live about a hundred metres from the thames, in a ground floor flat and so, as you can imagine, are rather nervous.
this is a photo i took this morning of the thames. its quite swolen but it doesn’t look too bad at the moment…
the weather people have predicted that the thames is going to break its banks somewhere in the early hours of tomorrow morning, yet they apparantly they can’t predict the extent of the flooding. whats annoyed me about this debacle though is that there isn’t any visible support from the council or the government. no-one is coming out to build flood defences and the only advice one can get on how to prepare is by searching for it on the internet (and even then it isn’t easy to find). only when areas have already been flooded have the fire services and those people come out and put sandbags and stuff down. a bit too late really…
the botley road, one of the main roads that leads into oxford
tomorrow, at least, is meant to be dry. but then wednesday and thursday its going to rain all day again.
its hard to describe my mood. writing it down like this i feel i should be down, but nothing has happened yet, and we don’t have any idea of the potential extent of the flooding to come. so its hard to be down about anything in particular. i think until something happens we’ll just have to carry on and wait. i don’t think anyone actually believes its going to happen, just because they’ve never experienced it before in their lifetime. so at the moment we’re living in a kind of denial mixed with skepticism.
like i said, all we can do, really, is wait and hope it isn’t too bad.