Pitch black darkness, roads strewn with debris and christmas trees atop rows of yellow skips are some of the images conjured up of the floods that affected Carlisle on the evening of Friday 7th January 2005.
With the weekend just beginning, heavy rainfall blanketed the northern fells and hills. This drained mainly into the River Eden resulting in the worst flood to affect Carlisle since 1822.
The Environment Agency Sheepmount measuring station recorded a flow peak estimated to be 1520 m3/s at 1430hrs on Saturday 8th January.
One estimate put the resulting damage to property and infrastructure at £400m.
A decade later
Ten years have passed and a lot of change has happened in the City.
Caldewgate in the west has been totally redeveloped with a new supermarket. A ring of flood defences, costing more than £20m, now encircle the historic central area and the Christmas trees have reappeared in the bay windows on Warwick Road.
Throughout the decade we have been documenting in our unique way some of these changes.
- Our search to collect images of all 40 ceramic tiles documenting the flooding and the rebuilding effort.
- Installation of a new bridge in Denton Holme after the previous one was washed away.
- and finally another artwork, this time behind the Pirelli Tyre factory in the shape of a petal or giant sun
For many humans, memories of the flooding in Carlisle are quite vivid.
To visitors the stories and images seem unbelievable. What is clear is the city is better protected from the River Eden, emergency response teams have become experienced in dealing with quick changes in weather conditions and hopefully an event of this scale will not effect the area for many years to come.
What were your experiences of the floods. Were your normal walks disrupted, did you have to go to kennels ? Let me know in the comments area below.
Licks and wags until next time