The floods of 1947 are used as the benchmark for measuring against all British floods, which shows the extent of the impact that they had on our country all those years ago, as they still resonate with many of us today.
At this point in time Britain had barely recovered from the second world war that had come to an end less than a year earlier. Food rations were already scarce and the economy was literally on its’ knees. This is before Britain was subject to six weeks of non stop snowfall which reached heights of 1.5 meters. All of this snow was then almost immediately melted by a thaw, followed by severe winds and rainfall – some of the heaviest rain ever recorded. It was suggested that rivers were rising by a foot every hour!
Nearly 300,000 hectares of land were flooded which roughly equates to the size of Kent. Dozens of major towns were also flooded and tens of thousands of people were evacuated. According to the borough engineer Geoffrey Baker, the only thing that would have helped them cope would be if there was one or two more river thames’ to fill!
A massive 276,000 properties were affected by flooding in 1947, 100,000 of which were directly flooded. Can you imagine how difficult this was for those people? At a time where resources were already scarce and people had very little of anything. The total losses for 1947 stand at around £3bn to £4.5bn.
So, If an area the size of Kent can flood, i’d say that we’re all at a pretty high risk of flooding, wouldn’t you? I’m sure we’ll all witness a flood of a similar size in our lifetimes – are you prepared? No? Don’t worry, Floodsense can help you. We provide expert flood advice with 35 years’ of experience in water damage restoration and flood protection.
If you have any further questions please feel free to contact me at Kevin@floodsense.co.uk