2017 – November Numbers

Oh dear! Here we are, one month into the annual recharge season with groundwater levels still falling and, as gardeners will know, a high “soil moisture deficit” – i.e. the ground is very dry.

The Environment Agency report for Hertfordshire and North London states “Groundwater levels continued to fall at all of our groundwater sites across the Area with both Ashley Green and Amersham Road – both on the Chess – having recorded the lowest October groundwater levels on record”. While our own records for the Misbourne valley indicate levels are the lowest for 10 years, they are still quite a bit above 1997. Furthermore, although recent rainfall totals have been low, historical records list plenty of times in the past 150 years when annual (and two years’) total rainfall figures have been less. Affinity Water have shared information with us to confirm that abstraction has been no higher than usual and, of course, a poor summer helped avoid the usual high demand for lawns etc.

Seeing no flow through Amersham has been a bit of a shock but the situation mirrors that of 2006 and in 1997 the Misbourne was dry all the way to below Chalfont Park for several months. So, what can we expect in 2018? The answer is totally dependent upon the timing and “shape” of winter precipitation. Too late and it will be lost to new growth in the spring. Too stormy and it will be lost as run-off. Daily and constant should do the trick!!

To cheerier matters. You will, I’m sure, have noted the 10th annual MRA dinner in your diaries from previous missives. Just to confirm, it will be on 14th December at The Greyhound in Chalfont St Peter 7.15 for 7.45 and, as usual will be a very enjoyable evening. Please let me know by next Tuesday 5th if you can join us and I will send out menus for you to choose from. Cost this year is £25.50 per person for 2 courses or £29.50 for 3 including coffee. Remember RSVP ASAP.

Unless we hear of any particular obstructions, there seems little we can productively achieve until the spring. We will just let the vegetation die back before once again working towards ensuring the watercourse is fit to optimise whatever water we eventually receive.

Meanwhile, we really look forward to catching up with you at the dinner on the 14th.

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