27 NovVale Flooding Update as at 1300hrs, 27th November

The Vale of White Horse District Council is represented at Silver Command at Kidlington Fire HQ co-coordinating the District’s response to the flooding along with Oxfordshire County Council, the Environment Agency and the Emergency Services.

Below is the latest information that I have from the latest conference at Silver Command. I also include some background information from the last few updates. Please note the situation changes by the minute!

It is expected that by 5pm today the level in the Thames at Abingdon will be 140mm below the 2007 level, however it is expected that the river will continue to rise up until Wednesday evening so could be in line with the 2007 floods.

In 2007 454 properties were affected, although this was mainly linked to the Ock, which has currently not reached the same levels as 2007 therefore the next 24 hours will be crucial.

The Thames and tributaries will continue to rise over the next 24/48 hours, although little rain predicted, cold weather is now being forecast over the next three to five days adding to issues of safety and concern for vulnerable people.

Specifics Issues

1. Kennington Barrier – We have deployed the flood prevention barrier at Kennington which has caused the road closure. The barriers are reported to be working effectively and there are no reports of flooding at the moment. Police have added this to their visits to ensure there is no vandalism (it was slashed previously).

2. South Hinksey – I understand one delivery of sand bags has already been made. More sand bags delivered to properties at risk by OCC on our behalf.

3. Abingdon Hospital – their pump has failed in the boiler house, Fire Brigade pumping out to ensure heating/power is maintained until engineer arrives, currently no disruption to services.

4. Abingdon – St Helen’s Mill, submersible pumps have failed and properties flooding, Fire and Rescue on site to help. OCC checking on vulnerable clients in this area.

5. Sutton Courtenay – Sand bags are being delivered to The Green in Sutton Courtenay.

General points

6. Checks on known vulnerable adults/families that may be at risk continues, it is easier to move people before roads are closed than after. If you know of older or disabled people who may be at risk please call 08081 685 082. There is particular concern over a couple of care homes. Resources are on hand to deal with any escalation. Floodsax were provided last night.

7. Housing duty officers will be on standby to assist where needed with temporary housing for individual cases, we are not yet proposing to open any rest centres in Vale or South. We are currently investigating opening a rest centre in Abingdon, but will report this if it takes place, officers are preparing should we need to request that this is opened later this evening or overnight.

8. We have had 20 tonnes of sand delivered this morning and the County has 100 tonnes of sand plus 1500 sand bags made up, so despite some reports of shortages this is not the issue. Jewson in Abingdon have sand if stocks are short, we also have offers of other assistance on this.


Residents in flood plain areas who have received an Environment Agency Flood Warning alert, and who do not have access to sandbags or an alternative, are able to collect sandbags from:

  • Cattlemarket Car Park, Abingdon
  • B&Q Abingdon
  • The Green, Sutton Courtenay

Please note, this should be for urgent need cases only. Please note, a number of local traders also have stocks of sandbags.
If you do not have sandbags you are advised to fill up plastic bags with stones or soil and use these as alternatives.

Road Closures

Tollgate Road is closed at the Wagon and Horses traffic lights to Sutton Courtenay.
Manor Road in South Hinksey is closed due to flooding.
Kennington Road at Upper Road, Kennington is closed due to the deployment of flood prevention barrier.
Abingdon Road in Oxford is closed, buses are being diverted.
North Hinksey Lane is closed, and North Hinksey Primary School is closed.
Police will take action against motorists ignoring warnings and attempting to drive through floods.
Rye Farm and Hales Meadow car parks in Abingdon are currently closed.

Bin Collections

Our contractor, Biffa, have reported no particular problems with making their collections today, as the areas on today’s schedule are unaffected by flooding. There is concern over collections on Thursday and Friday should the current situation continue. If there are any problems we will do our best to communicate this to residents using all means possible, and catch up with collections as soon as possible.

Contacts and updates

More information is available on the various council websites, with links to other information including live traffic maps and flood warning maps.
Vale of White Horse District Council  01235 520202  Out of hours 01235 524886
Oxfordshire County Council
If there is danger to life call 999

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