Monday 9th July 2012, 3.15pm (day 319)
This is the worst thing I have had to post about on this blog.
Until 1.15pm today had been a very uneventful day. It then started raining: hard. Very, very hard.
By 2.15pm the road on which I live had become a river, and then we saw that the lane which goes into the woods was pouring out water (and stones). Whether it was just rainwater or whether, as some speculated, the old reservoir at the top of the woods had burst its banks, the normally placid mill stream turned into a torrent. Where it goes under the main Keighley Road and through a sluice pipe into the river, this backed up against the retaining wall to an astonishing degree, rising literally 15 feet in half an hour and eventually pouring through the gardens of the two houses nearest the bridge.
The owners of the house were not in. Myself and other neighbours tried to save vital items and – most importantly – the two dogs (which you have seen before on this blog). But most of the ground floors were taken out. Our house is uphill from the stream, so was fine (a couple of idiot drivers ploughing through the stream at 30mph being the main threat).
More photos and footage can be seen on YouTube and Facebook for those into their weather porn. For comparison, the lake you see in the woods at a couple of points is where we played mölkky the other day.
I’m supposed to be going to New Orleans tomorrow, by the way – but I ain’t promising anything. At the moment, Hebden Bridge is impassable to cars.