The West Riding and part of Lancashire and Derbyshire have
been visited with the severest flood known in this generation. Inces- sant rain on Thursday and Friday week swelled the rivers and streams and " becks" of the districts round Leeds, till they overflowed their banks, poured down the dales in heavy torrents, flooded the meadows, swept through the Midland Railway, and nearly drowned Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield, Skipton, and many other towns. The valley of the Aire was especially visited, and in Leeds many lives, some say thirty, were lost altogether. Both there and in Bradford locomotion was only possible in omnibuses, and in parts of Wakefield it became necessary to prohibit all traffic. Everywhere walls were thrown down, roads cut, buildings under- mined, ground floors and cellars swamped, cattle drowned, and fields covered with a heavy deposit of silt. The aspect of the country seen from the railway was most striking ; trees, chimneys, farmhouses, rising apparently out of a vast lake, studded with little islands, the tops of hillocks, on which the animals had taken refuge. Among the living things destroyed were many thousands of hares—a curious proof of the rate at which the water must have risen—and the total damage is estimated at nearly a million, an estimate possibly correct, from the extent of country covered, but still hazardous.