The run up to Christmas this year will be unforgettable and of course the weather is to blame, not lots of snow for a white Christmas but severe gales and heavy rain, see my post on my diary; from the early morning, yesterday, to this morning, Christmas eve. The fields around were already saturated with water and the floods from a few days ago had just gone down within the banks of the Stour. We knew that the storm would bring flooding and it certainly did. Sturminster Newton was cut off and our village wasn’t easy to get through with floods and trees across the roads.

After lunch we decided to venture down to Shillingstone to have a look at the floods from the trailway and hopefully get some pictures. It was quite an adventure as we walked down the road because of course our usual route across the fields was impassable. We got half way there and there was a flood in the road and we had to time it to walk through in case a car came along and drenched us! We had to pick our way as it was quite deep in places.

The picture of the measure below shows how high the river was running.

Depth measure
Flooding measure nearly underwater

The next two pictures show Bere Marsh Farm and the North Dorset trailway. The farm and outbuildings look as they they are dangerously close to the floods. I hope they escaped the water, we couldn’t go and have a look as the water on the trailway was too deep to get through.

Bere Marsh Farm
Bere Marsh Farm
Bere Marsh Farm
Bere Marsh Farm

We walked to the old railway bridge and again the water was across the road and by picking our way we just managed to get onto the trailway towards Shillingstone which is on higher ground, although Rod managed to get some water in his boot and was quite grumpy! Some people are not adventurous. The flow on the water across the road was surprising in it’s strength .

Old railway bridge
Old railway bridge

Once we were on the trailway we had a good view across the floods towards Hambledon hill and I decided to take a panorama of the view from Haywards bridge across to Hod hill on the right. I was lucky to it was bright as the sun was very low in the sky and would soon disappear behind Okeford Hill.

Shillingstone Panorama
Shillingstone Panorama – click for a bigger image

As we were on the trailway we realised that the main road also had problems, the A357  was flooded, this has not flooded for many years, there was work done on it to prevent it happening but I think this storm was just too much for all the drainage to cope with. Some people chickened out when they saw the water but others particularly 4 wheel drives took pleasure in ploughing through at speed. It was passable to cars if they took it steady.

Old railway bridge towards Child Okeford
Old railway bridge towards Child Okeford
Cookswell Brook, Shillingstone
Cookswell, Shillingstone A357 road

We wanted to get back before the light went as it’s a well used road and with all the bends not the safest of roads to walk but I’m glad we had a look and it was a lovely afternoon after the terrible storms.

From Haywards bridge towards Child Okeford
From Haywards bridge towards Child Okeford
Flow of water across the fields
Flow of water under the flood arches across the fields

 

One thought on “Stormy weather and floods

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