Boxing Day floods engulf Calderdale

Flooding in Elland, by Matthew James
Flooding in Elland, by Matthew James

Calderdale communities have woken up this morning to devastating floods as wind and rain continue to batter the borough.

Todmorden, Walsden, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd and Elland have all been hit by severe flooding, with emergency services at the scene as residents battle the elements.

It is thought in some places flood waters have reached 6ft and above, with homes and businesses devastated and communities cut off. 
As rivers rise to record levels, West Yorkshire Police, Calderdale Council, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and the Environment Agency have set up a command centre to coordinate relief efforts.

The Environment Agency has issued severe flood warnings - meaning there is a danger to life - for the River Calder at Todmorden, Eastwood, Charlestown, Callis Bridge, Sowerby Bridge and Mytholmroyd.

Severe warnings are also in place for Hebden Water at Hebden Bridge, Walsden Water at Walsden and Todmorden, River Ryburn at Sowerby Bridge and Cragg Brook at Mytholmroyd. 

River levels in Todmorden are expected to peak at 1pm and in Hebden Bridge at 2pm.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said: “We have field team members teams in the area supporting Calderdale Council. We are working with police to maintain public safety. We are also supporting the coordinated multi-agency response.

“We are closely monitoring the situation from the Leeds Incident Room which is open and we have field team staff on site.”

Todmorden Flood Warden Keith Crabtree said: “It goes without saying that this Christmas will go down in the record books all for the wrong reasons.

“The Calder Valley is cut off from the rest of the world. My heart goes out to all affected and there is not much joy as the rain is still coming down.

“Please do not drive around as all roads are severely affected by deep flood waters. Please stay safe.”

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