Mold and district floods, 1892

Newpaper Report

The following article appears in the Wrexham Advertiser of 8 October 1892. The reporter, writing in an almost Dickensian style refers to the flooding of August 1887 which seem to have been much worse, washing away the Mold to Denbigh railway line, but does not seem to have been reported in quite so much detail in the local papers.


Our Mold correspondent writes:- The heavy rains at the end of September and the opening days of October, culminated on Monday afternoon and evening in a thunderstorm, accompanied with quite a deluge of rain which resulted in heavy floods, which, for a short time, attained almost to the proportion of the great flood of August, 1879. The barometer had been low for several days and there had been almost incessant rain. Sunday was fine, but with lowering clouds gathering in from all points of the compass, which on Monday morning came down unceasingly in cold drizzling rain, with showers of hail intermixed. The ground was thoroughly saturated before, and the River Alyn. in which there was a strong flood, though not over the banks was rapidly rising, the meadows becoming covered. This was the state of things when night came, when there was a momentary cessation, which with the rising barometer, led many to hope that they had seen the worst. Just then could be indistinctly heard the rolling of thunder, and then -it being a few minutes after seven —a renewed downpour. Flashes of lightning came at intervals, and the roll of distant thunder became more distinct. The rain seemed to concentrate itself, and descended in sheets. The roofs of the houses appeared to be so many cataracts, and then a vivid flash, followed, not by a crack, but by a roll of thunder which shook every house in town to its foundation. The rain came down with redoubled energy, till the beholder knew not whether it came down, or whether it did not spatter up quite as much, The street gutters were overflown, the streets themselves becoming so many watercourses, along which the floods rushed headlong and irresistible. This kept on until nearly ten o’clock, when there was a cessation. The lower parts of the town were all flooded, the water being in many of the houses, and several of the inhabitants engaged in moving their pigs, cows, and horses to safer premises. This was the case in the lower end of New-street; in the bottom of Alyn Terrace; in Milford-street; Ponterwyl, and the lower end of Wrexham-street. Here the culvert taking the Glanrafon brook underneath the road had become too small, and the brook came down with a strong current, which swept between the tan yard and the brewery, backing the water up to the brewery gate on one side, and to Cunliffe-street on the other. the Bowling-green Hotel appearing like an island in the midst of the sea. The water here was quite a yard deep, and the horses had to be taken out of Messrs. Parker and Clegg’s stables, a service that was performed with difficulty. Tuesday morning opened very fine, and it could be seen that the local floods, at any rate, were abating, but the meadows along the river side were like a sea, and clearly there had been no flood to compare with it since the great one of 1879. At Llong, the river had so swollen that the rails were covered, but as the current was not strong the traffic was carried on, though with great caution. Above the town, and where the railway crosses the river opposite the Tin Plate Works, there was a very strong current rushing across, the railway being submerged for about 300 yards, and here it was not considered safe to carry on the traffic, so no train was allowed to pass. The rails were covered for a long distance, from below the Tin-plate Works to a point considerably higher up than the Denbigh-road, and for an hour or two the flood reached a point within a very few inches of the water mark of 1879, but this was not maintained, whereas then there was no sensible abatement for upwards of a day. The road along the plateau above Gerddi Duon showed signs of considerable torrents, increasing in volume as well as force as we neared Broalyn, and the descent to Rhydymwyn. Here the road was covered at about half-past eleven to a depth of from two to three feet in places. The flood at this time was evidently abating, but the roadside inn—The Antelope—was quite isolated, men wading about anxious to turn a penny by leading the horses through the flood. The sight at the station was an interesting one nevertheless. Along the road from the direction of Coed Du came a torrent about two feet deep, which spread itself along the high road and burst on the railway, flooding it in the early morning to the depth of more than a foot, and playing the very havoc with the ballast, so as to make traffic impossible. There was a train on the Denbigh side of the flood which had emptied its passengers, and stood listlessly watching the waters as if afraid to go forward and ashamed to go back. There were sightseers in plenty, and one of them assured us that the height of the flood took place at three o’clock in the morning. Just then one of the Misses Cooke, of Gwysaney, came along on horseback, and to show that the place was not without danger the horse stumbled and fell on its side in the current. Miss Cooke, however, though thoroughly drenched, lost not her self-possession.  With the assistance of two men the horse got on its legs again, when she remounted and went her way, amid the cheers of the onlookers. Beyond Rhydymwyn not much damage had been done. At Hendre the brook coming from Tarddydwr had flooded the road to the depth of three feet in places, but was fast abating when we passed through. A little flood had taken place, too, near the Sun, on the Denbigh side of Nannerch but the fall of rain did not appear to be anything like what had taken place at Mold, and hearing that the road to Denbigh was clear we pursued our way no further. We should imagine that the larger half of the crops is out, but we were assured that so far, no great damage had been done owing to the cold weather. In fact, the grain which had been stored in stacks was said to be in the worse condition of the two, owing to the fact that the stacks were absorbing the rain, which had come on before they had been finished. The season, however, is a memorable and trying one, and such has as not been experienced for many years. 

 Wrexham Advertiser 8 Oct 1892