Flooding January 2024


Heavy rain in the first few days of January fell onto saturated ground. The river had been close to normal levels for weeks before this, but it started rising rapidly in the early hours of New Year's Eve. It carried on rising at about 13cm per day for the next week, ending up about 1m above normal by 7th January.

This graph shows the level of the Thames from 31st December 2023 to 7th January 2024. The red horizontal line is roughly at the level where water starts flowing out of the Thames across the land above Shiplake weir. The vertical scale is in centimetres.

A Flood Alert was issued at 18:30 on 1st January.

By the evening of Tuesday 2nd January, the water was 10cm below the bank at our monitoring station and 15cm deep under the railway bridge on Loddon Drive. Ordinary cars could get through with care, but it would have been risky to try that the next morning.

By mid-day on the 4th January it required a Land Rover driven very slowly to get in and out on the road to the A4.

A Flood Warning was issued at 22:00 on 4th January. By this time, Loddon Drive was effectively inaccessible. The Thames kept rising until about mid-day on Sunday 7th January 2024, and reached 53cm above the bank. This would be roughly 80cm deep under the railway bridge and much of the route to the A4 would have been about 57cm deep: too deep even for large 4x4 SUVs.

The rain had stopped and the rivers started to drop at a good rate. By Wednesday 10th, the Thames was 20cm above the bank. The route to the A4 had long sections 40cm deep and a few 50cm deep. By Friday 12th, the Thames was level with the bank and the A4 end of Loddon Drive was usable with care. Ordinary cars could pass under the railway bridge on Saturday, and the river was back to a fairly normal level by Monday lunchtime. Lots of debris in funny places of course, and a fair amount of mud to be cleared.

The flood warning was cleared on Thursday 11th Jan: probably a bit early, as most cars would have had trouble in several places on Loddon Drive at that time.

Thames datalogger homepage Findlays Net homepage