Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
Survivors of Canvey flood invited to share memories as anniversary approaches
SURVIVORS of a flood which devastated Canvey are being invited to share their memories to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the disaster.
Fifty-eight people on Canvey tragically lost their lives when the full force of the North Sea came crashing over sea defences one fateful night in January 1953 leaving the island under water.
Now, as the 60th anniversary of the tragedy approaches, veteran Canvey councillor Ray Howard and Rebecca Harris,Tory MP for Castle Point, are asking residents to come together to share their experiences.
Mrs Harris said: “The flood is one of the most significant moments in the history and heritage of Canvey and one that should never be forgotten. We want as many people as possible who lived through the floods to take part in the events and share their experiences so future generations of islanders can better understand what it was like to live through that terrible event.
“Many residents have told me emotional stories of lost loved ones, but residents have also told me some very inspiring accounts of how the island came together as a community to get through it. It would be a great tragedy if these stories were lost.”
The storm is still one of the country’s worst natural disasters, claiming the lives of 307 people.
In total, 30,000 people were evacuated from the east coast of England and it eventually took nine months to drain the floodwater and repair the seawalls.
New sea defences were installed in 1983 following the disaster which last week.
Mr Howard, whose family home in North Avenue was flooded in the event, said: “There will be a number of events across the Island at the end of January to commemorate the floods and we want to make sure that we know who all the existing survivors are so that everyone has a chance to be involved in the commemoration.
“It is important that as the years go by we still remember that terrible ordeal. It was gratifying that just last week the flood defences for the island were found to be sound and secure for another 50 years and beyond as the defences were put in place directly as a result of the 1953 flood.”
Anyone who lived through the flood is invited to send a letter to Mrs Harris at the House of Commons, in London SW1A 0AA to share their stories and receive a full diary of the events planned.
Comments are closed on this article.