And the Bafta nominee for shakiest camera work and worst soundtrack in the open air is...
“Floods II – broke bank fountain”
Featuring in appearance order:
The ditch that carries water away from the neighbouring village,
The River Dever at Bransbury
And a groundbreaking performance that trod new roads from a portion of The River Test
Strange days indeed, four months ago this river and the aquifers that feed it were at one of the lowest levels recorded, today sages predict that they will soon be at the highest ever recorded; from off the bottom of the gauge at Weston Colley to a substantial out of bank experience. Nothing on the scale of the Thames, Severn and Somerset Levels but this is a chalkstream and this is very unusual behaviour for groundwater fed rivers, strange days indeed (repeated for emphasis ed). After the floodwaters subside on flashier rivers the groundwater flow will mean that fields and roads in chalk valleys will remain flooded far longer.
He was really funny, it was a great mime of a person swimming and was just what was required at that particular moment and drew rave reviews, the best of which is listed below:
In what may have been a bungled effort to pick a day to bury bad news, all who manned the flood defence had that day received through the post compulsory notice from the water authorities that their properties were to be fitted with water meters to preserve a commodity which was becoming ever more precious.
"Hear hear!" said I
Which instigated a tense stand off between myself and several poised with buckets that were about to be thrown my way.
Over on the Itchen things have taken an unusual twist. In order to save Winchester from aquatic Armageddon, the M3 motorway was closed one evening and over a hundred one tonne sacks of sand and gravel lowered into the main river at the point that it shoots through the substantial culvert below the UK’s highway number 3. It’s the weir that Wickes built and the idea is to flood the land upstream in order to gain Winchester some breathing space particularly in the coming few days when several inches of rain is forecast. Innovative thinking from the folk at flood defence and by accident rather than design, but where we saw a motorway crossing a valley they saw dam potential. Models predict (and Cindy Crawford is rarely wrong in these matters) that three hundred acres of water meadow will be flooded to a depth of four feet, the chap who lives by the main bridge in Easton will have the willies but if it sees Winchester through the next rough week of weather, well done the blokes at the EA.
What if there were a set of hatches in place under the M3 to carry out this kind of operation and negate the need for a sponsorship deal with Wickes?
Oh yes, impounded streams and all that, best rip the hatches and sluices out then.
Further down the river Romsey’s World of Water (a tropical and freshwater fish emporia) reached nirvana as the nearby river flowed through their premises. Inspired by “Free Willy” several substantial sturgeon have fled into the neighbouring river Test. We have seen sturgeon feed on the surface, swimming upside down to take floating baits with their under slung mouths in a French lake so there could be some fun to be had at Mayfly time on the lower Test.
Don’t rip the hatches out but learn how to use them, understand what is and isn’t achievable with each set of sluices and return to some sensible channel management.
Apologies for the garbled nature of this post, fairly frantic times.
Traffic News: Just heard that A303 dual carriage way, the Great Western road to some , the North/South divide to others, has been closed fifteen miles est of here due to flooding. If you were planning on a camping trip to Cornwall this weekend you will need to find another route.
A chuffin tree falling on the back of your home!