One inch away from evacuation…

Just came across this drawing from 2007 when Gloucester, the City where I lived at the time, was more than knee deep in water. None of this was drinking water, that was cut off. No water came from the taps but Biblical amounts came from the sky. June 2007 was we were told at the time, a once in 100 year event, when it rained, then it rained even more, then it turned on a pump in the sky and it deluged down on us. “Toys r Us” the huge local toyshop since washed away financially, opened it’s doors at one end to let the water out the other end. Drinking water was supplied in bottles brought in by lorries from as far away as Scotland. The local pumping station for our tap water had been overwhelmed by it’s own product coming from the sky. To get the water one only had to drive up to one of the car parks where the crates were stacked and volunteers would open the back door of your car and chuck in a few crates. All surprisingly efficient and friendly.

The local electricity pump station which had been built on one of the lowest areas of the City was also under threat from rising water. It is said that the whole area was one inch away from being cut off from power and there were plans to evacuate the entire population. Not sure if this was a folk tale or not. Where would we all have gone? Luckily this did not happen and after around 7 or 8 days we had water back from the taps, and we could all have a bath and tackle the pervading BO problem.

In true style the County Council commissioned a report. That’s when we learned of the 100 year event phrase. They also commissioned me to do some drawings to go with their report. Which was good for me! As a result the whole area was examined for flooding risk and remedial action taken to try and make sure that if this does happen again in 88 years, we will be well prepared. They’ll have all the data!

Plot poppy

I’ve had a plot, an allotment, for a while now and this year it’s had the benefit of a lot of neglect from me. Leaving it well alone has allowed a group of pink poppies to take over an area where I’d planted shallots. They look brilliant so thought I’d share this one with you. If I’d tried to grow them I’ve no doubt they would not have been as successful as they have been.

That’s Comfrey with the blue flower in the background. Someone told me once that it can be a bit of a thug invader, which it has proved to be but it keeps the bees happy.

Enjoy your Summer!

Celebrating the Severn.

Down to the River for a morning out in a part of Gloucestershire that’s not visited by coaches and tourists that much. It’s at the end of the Gloucester canal not far from Sharpness Docks which is where shipping wanting to get to Gloucester would, and still, use the canal to navigate up to Gloucester Docks.

At the small village of Purton, a number of old ships were beached by the side of the River to aid the fight against erosion of the banks by the tides.

I’ll write more on this in the next blogs, but for today, my friend Robin and I took some time down there to take pictures of the ships and to give his melodeon a run out in the fresh air. For those of a more musical bent than I he’s playing a Castagnari “Giordi” and it’s sometimes called a “diatonic accordion”.  So there!

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.