One of my daughters lived in this little village for a few years so I can vouch for how flat the land is there, it is also bordered on its north by the River Brue and its south and west side by the River Parrett, also to the south is the River Huntspill. The village's 14th century sea wall, had been built alongside the River Parrett, was destroyed in this flood, it had been rebuilt but destroyed again by flooding 1703 when standing water was up to four feet deep.
It is quite plain, even now, how very susceptible this village is to flooding, and I am not at all surprised to read that its inhabitants lost much in 1606. Nothing happened as bad as 1606 as the while she was there, but none the less, thank goodness she moved!
"The day dawns sunny and bright. You are ploughing a field in your smallholding deep in the Somerset Levels. As the sweat drips down your back, you hear a distant rumbling sound but think nothing of it; the wind has been blowing a gale all night. Suddenly, a shout from a neighbour makes you look up in alarm. At the end of the far field you see a great cloud hugging the ground, light dazzling off the whiteness. At first you are confused: is it fog, or smoke from a fire? But then you realise, it’s water. Within ten seconds, the tumbling, roaring mass has advanced the length of the paddock. You try to run but it’s too late. Knocked off your feet by the force of the wave, your head dips below the surface and you inhale a lungful of salty water…"
The question has been asked if this event was a flood or a tsunami. The term tsunami first appeared a scientific paper in 2002, so was it?
Dr Stamper continues:
The most supportive evidence for a tsunami comes from “Gods warning to the people of England“, a publication funded by the Church. Its coverage of the event is predictably zealous, describing the flood as a “universal, punishment by water.” As geologists, the obvious solution would be to look to the rock record; however, tsunami deposits are notoriously tricky to identify because their physical markers are incredibly hard to distinguish from other sources of coastal flooding."