Ten hours' wait before rescue

Southend Pictorial Flood Supplement 1953

The story of how they spent 10 hours—which felt as long as 10 weeks—in the attic of a bungalow where the water reached the picture rail was told by five members of the Lynch family, of Tewkes Road, Canvey, to a reporter, at St. Clement’s Hall, Leigh, on Sun­day afternoon. Speaking between sips of the hot soup, Mr. Albert Lynch said his family took very little notice of the air raid siren warning, given late on Saturday evening, but just prior to the breaking of the sea-wall near their home which let in the flood water they were warned by neigh­bours.

They had no time to remove belongings into the cob-webbed attic, as the back door was forced away from its hinges by the gushing water and the family made a dash upstairs. With water only two feet below the attic level, the five sat for 10 hours until mid-day Sunday, when they were res­cued through a small attic window, by the crew of a Leigh fishing bawley.

“That ten hours was the most terrifying I have ever experienced,” said Mr. Lynch. “We could see people perched on tiled roofs of bungalows. Frequent screams for help penetrated the darkness.” The family were accommo­dated at the home of Mr. Lynch’s sister.

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