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Despite some awful weather last night where the wind howled and the rain beat down, the waters of the River Calder subsided and the flooding abated. We’re not out of the woods yet as the forecast isn’t exactly brilliant, but Ciara, the storm that’s caused so much damage has blown over. Now there’s time for the poor sods who’ve been flooded to start picking up the pieces. Again.

I’d originally thought I might head over to Mytholmroyd to document the damage but I’ve been too busy to tear myself away from the computer long enough. I had a big batch of pictures to get finalised for one client, then deal with enquiries and picture requests from another, so I’ve spent most of the day huddled in the office cross-referencing picture databases. It’s not the most glamourous side of the job, but it has to be done.

Finally, after getting the pictures away to the client I went out for a stroll to stretch my legs and also clear my head. The wind may not have dropped, but the temperature certainly has. An arctic blast followed me most of the way, especially up on the promenade above our local woods. I’d have liked to have stayed out longer but as I gazed out across the valley I could see the next storm approaching, blocking out the view of the Calder Valley towards Mytholmroyd as it made its way Eastwards.

Uh, oh – it’s coming my way…

Thinking it was a snowstorm I decided to get home before it caught me. I almost made it before the hailstorm (for that’s what it was) nailed me a few hundred metres from home! Drying out at home I thought I’d venture out again once it had passed, but the bugger keeps coming back. Every time I poke my head outside I find fresh hailstones on the door mat!The weather across the North-West and Yorkshire’s looking pretty mixed tomorrow so I may end up having another day in the office. If the Government does finally pull it’s finger out and the speculation is correct, tomorrow will see some big announcements on investment in infrastructure, which *should* include the new HS2 rai line. That said, we’ve been here before, but I’ll be glad to have the time to sit, analyse and blog about the contents of any announcements and see how the predictions I made when the Oakervee review was announced last August have stood the test of time. You can read that blog here.

I suspect we’ll see a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth from those opposed to HS2. Most of it will be pure social media froth from the reprogrammed pro-Brexit trolls, plus the dwindling bunch of real people who live on the route but who’ve spent the past 10 years pretending to themselves that they were some sort of coherent campaign that actually had any political clout. I think for some of them the decision will take some time to sink in as they’ve listened to little else than the voices in their own little echo-chamber for so long. I’ll be interested to see what the announcement does to the tiny protest groups that are on several sites on the route. Will the announcement make more of them realise the futility of what they’re doing? After all, it’s all very well thinking that the decision whether to go ahead with HS2 hasn’t been made so you might actually achieve something. But when it becomes obvious that’s not the case…

Either way, we’ll be moving on to a very different chapter as construction of HS2 ramps up. No doubt there’ll still be some hiccups. On a project this size it would be a miracle if there wasn’t. I’ll look forward to what’s said with interest.

Once the nights get a bit longer I expect to be busy documenting the construction of Phase 1 and some other UK rail projects too…