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Personal Recollections - Mrs. Sheila Brewster (Walton)

"It was remarkable really, I wasn't here, but had gone to work in Kingston. We’d had rain all day Saturday and most of Sunday. We didn’t think anything of it, we had often had rain like that. I went off to work on Monday morning as usual and when I had got to Molesey High Street, half the High Street had flooded. I thought it was strange and supposed the drains were blocked. I just drove on and stayed at work all day at County Hall, Kingston, and never got a message through and I didn’t hear anything at all.

"When I came out of work about 5 o’clock, I started off home and before long hit a traffic jam along the Portsmouth Road.......... when I got to the Brighton Road turning, there was a board which said the road was closed. I thought there must have been an accident, so I turned up Brighton Road thinking I'd have to get home via Hampton Court, over Kingston Bridge and along Hampton Court Road. The traffic was terrible, absolutely wicked, I went a few yards and stopped again. As I got to Hampton Court I wanted to turn down Hurst Road but water was pouring out of the doors of the Mitre Hotel, and I drove through this down Hurst Road where there was no sign of water except that all the turnings off had closed signs and Molesey Road was closed.

"Eventually I drove into Weston Avenue, where I was met with a sheet of water and somebody was rowing a boat! I backed out and then went along Walton Road by the reservoir. I saw a policeman there, and asked how I could get to Field Common Estate. He told me that I couldn't unless I could swim! and that the estate was flooded. I asked him what had happened to all the people there, and he said they’d all been evacuated and that I'd have to make further enquiries as to where they’d been taken.

"I drove a bit further before abandoning my car on some higher ground, and walked down Rydens Road. I'd almost got to the reservoirs when I came across the water. There were coaches, lorries and trucks driving through the floods carrying people being evacuated. As I stood at the edge of the water there were shouts from people in their houses telling them to slow down as the waves were coming into their houses.

"I was worrying how I could find my mother and father, when somebody called my name - it was one of my neighbours, and he told me that Mum and Dad were in a coach that had just passed me and were being taken to one of the emergency centres."

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