So the shit has FINALLY hit the fan... half of southern England is submerged, okay well not half. But its a lot. A spring tide, unprecedented rainfall and heavy rainfall means a lot of Gloucestershire is pretty wet right now, and with Hull, Sehffield and Yorkshire under as much as 8 foot a few weeks ago and bits off the South East constantly under risk... well its actually pretty bad.
Of course, i laugh at all the newsreaders standing in a puddle and going 'Here I am in flooded Dingley, where the High Street is submerged in two feet of water”, two whole feet? Oh my god abandon the country! But there is a seriously issues given the sheer size of the area affected. It not dramatic mudslides and torrents, but it is massive areas that seem to be increasing that are being inundated with flood water, over 350,000 people are effected in Gloucestershire alone, add on the localised flooding nationwide and those people in the northern floods, and well over a couple of million people must have been effected.
I noticed the new planning minister last night talking about how, the responsibility for Flood Risk Assessments is on the local Authority... what a surprise another burden neatly placed upon LA's, and of course they will have to balance the need for an entire two million homes over the next 20 years. Erm... how?
Along with Holland, Japan, Malaysia, bits of Germany and Bangladesh, the UK, but England and specifically southern England and the Midlands is pretty much one of the most densely populated places on the planet. How we have managed to maintain so much green space and countryside is a miracle... actually no, its one thing the planning system can clearly take the credit for.
I am very happy the housing problem is finally after all these coming to the fore. It really is about time. Given that the price of the average house can be 8-10 times the average salary (in sunny Bristol its between 6-8).
So where can it all go? What about infrastructure, especially transport, what the hell do we do about flooding, and how do we manage such a high population density, without destroying what we love, our countryside, whilst accepting that brits like houses with gardens, not flats with balconies?