1990 FLOOD

A lesson still not learnt

By Richard Beckett

Throughout January and February in 1990 there had been almost continuous rain with high tides and strong onshore winds, all of which combined to cause flooding of the River Ouse up at Lewes and beyond. The threat to Lewes was so severe that the Authorities took the decision to cut through the river bank just below the bridge at Southease and flood the adjacent fields on both side of the railway to lessen the impact. The subsequent effect was to form a lake, which stretched virtually from Glynde Reach down as far as North Quay. AND still the planners consider building on the flood plain on Eastside at Newhaven together with a proposal to form a flood defence bank north of the town to back the floodwater up to Lewes and beyond. These pictures are from the archives of the Newhaven Historical Society and from other sources.

Photo:Flooding between Cooksbridge and Lewes with the railway running left to right

Flooding between Cooksbridge and Lewes with the railway running left to right

Photo:The cut in the river bank near Southease Bridge

The cut in the river bank near Southease Bridge

Photo:General view from Southease looking towards Newhaven

General view from Southease looking towards Newhaven

Photo:View from Southease station bridge looking towards Newhaven

View from Southease station bridge looking towards Newhaven

Photo:View looking north, southease station in  distance behind tree at right

View looking north, southease station in distance behind tree at right

Photo:Itford Hill and the railway

Itford Hill and the railway

Photo: Illustrative image for the '1990 FLOOD' page
Photo:North Quay and the harbour

North Quay and the harbour

Photo:Overflow from Sleepers Hole into the rec and the football field

Overflow from Sleepers Hole into the rec and the football field

This page was added by Richard Beckett on 03/03/2014.
Comments about this page

I remember this well I'm sure the lower half of Bridge Street got a bit of a soaking as well. My uncle Rex Carter who is no longer with us, told me years ago that the flood plain extended from the bottom of landport in Lewes all the way down the valley toward Newhaven and probably further upriver as well. I have some pictures somewhere must find them.

By Dave Folwell
On 19/03/2014

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