Wednesday 29 July 2009

Wet Wet Wet

The Met Office's 'barbecue summer' is turning out as predicted with sensational accuracy here. But at least it's not 1956. That was a miserable sodden summer and no mistake, one of its grisly highlights being a wave of storms on 30 July which dumped a full 9 inches of rain on Nairn (almost an anagram) in 48 hours. It was London's wettest July since records began (back in the 17th century), and on this day of it a 12-year-old boy who was being treated in St Thomas's Hospital was brought out by staff onto the riverside by Waterloo bridge, where he watched the river hurrying past, red with mud and swollen almost to flooding point with rain. Eleven years later, that memory inspired the opening of a song - Waterloo Sunset. For yes it was Ray Davies (and the story may or may not be true; it's in his autobiography.)


  1. It's been a great summer - we had almost three good weeks, which is more than we've had in years.

    I did a post on Waterloo Sunset once, in which I opined that:

    Some songs are so ingrained into the national consciousness that they no longer really belong to the original artists, but to the country. Possibly to the Queen, in fact.

    A perfect song, god save it.

  2. Not me Uncle Dick - but I rejoice at the news.

  3. There was plenty to moan about in 1956, but let's remember, well those of us who can, that it was at this very time of that year that Jim Laker took 19 Aussie wickets for 90 in the Old Trafford test match. The Aussies whinge about the state of the pitch to this day. Shame ! But more bad news from '56 if your name was Tony Lock; he took the one remaining wicket.

  4. You are questioning the accuracy of a showbiz fact? The effrontery!

  5. 1956 was an excellent year for crisis, a friend was parachuted onto a middle eastern beach to assist Mr Nasser.
    The Germans, being a pragmatic bunch of Krauts save their rainwater, regenwassersamelsystem, what they do with it though is a mystery.