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Big clean-up continues after flood as King’s Lynn businesses count the cost

Mud and debris cover the quay side in King's Lynn after the previous evening's storm surge came within inches of breaching the flood barriers.

Mud and debris cover the quay side in King's Lynn after the previous evening's storm surge came within inches of breaching the flood barriers.

Some businesses along Lynn’s waterfront are still closed today as the massive clean-up operation goes on after Thursday’s high tides.

Environment Agency officers worked throughout the weekend to remove the deluge of sludge and reeds covering the South Quay – which is also an issue faced by a number of traders in the area.

The Bank House opened on Friday as normal despite the cellar being flooded while Marriott’s Warehouse, Riverside Restaurant and The Ouse all closed.

Michael Baldwin, the general manager of the Bank House, said the restaurant was evacuated by police at about 7.20pm on Thursday.

Staff were forced to move hundreds of bottles of wine from the cellar as the water started to seep in. Guests were able to return to the hotel later.

Workers also came to the rescue of a number of nearby residents, who did not have electricity, by filling up hot water bottles and flasks.

Mr Baldwin said: “The flood defences worked as they should. We didn’t have too much of an issue but the water did come in.

“We had Christmas parties booked and unfortunately we had to cancel them at the last minute. I think the authorities did an amazing job.”

Malcolm Catlin and Andrew Hornigold were hoping to re-open Marriott’s Warehouse later this week.

Mr Catlin found the ground floor covered with sludge and the cellar full to the ceiling with water on Friday morning and had to throw away several thousands pounds worth of stock which has been damaged by the flood.

A number of Christmas party bookings have also had to be cancelled.

Mr Catlin said: “Things are going slowly and we are taking it in stages. The fire brigade was here for eight hours on Friday pumping out the cellar.

“Everyone has been helpful and the fire brigade has been fantastic.

“The main thing is that no-one was hurt and we have to keep that in perspective. Everything can be cleaned up and it could have been so much worse.”

Riverside Restaurant, in King’s Street, was closed over the weekend for a clean-up operation but Crofters Coffee House was running as normal. Water seeped into the ground floor and reached a depth of 6ft in the restaurant’s cellar.

Owner Pat Isabill is hoping to re-open the restaurant today. The sea wall, which was part of the building, had been breached during the flood but has been made safe.

She said: “We had the firemen here from 10pm on Thursday to 6.30am on Friday. There were three different crews and they did a brilliant job.”

Hanse House owner Jamie Lee said he had a lucky escape as water covered the car park but did not make it into the building.

He said: “It was very close. The water rose to within an inch of the wall.”

 

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