'One more inch of water and the pub would have been gone'

By Emily Hawkins contact

- Last updated on GMT

Water damage: publicans have described their experiences of flooding to the Morning Advertiser
Water damage: publicans have described their experiences of flooding to the Morning Advertiser

Related tags: Pubs

Publicans have described how their communities have rallied together during devastating floods.

The Environment Agency currently has 30 flood warnings in place, with parts of Yorkshire and the Midlands likely to be severely affected by further heavy rain today.

The pub has had beer delivered by tractors
The pub has had beer delivered by tractors

Scott Godfrey, who runs the Hare and Hounds pub in the village, told The Morning Advertiser​ the pub was lucky to not have been flooded and had therefore been able to help out locals.Last week, residents of the village of Fishlake, close to Doncaster, were ordered to evacuate after the River Don burst its banks. 

A few residents have been sleeping at the pub after being unable to get back into their houses and the site has been taking in donations of food and clothes from surrounding villages.

The pub has had its beer deliveries made by tractors who have been able to transport barrels through the water, in addition to delivering food parcels to stranded residents.

Godfrey said: “Everybody's come together and we have been the hub of it. We have been fortunate that we have had no water here.”

He said: “It is amazing what tractors can do, we have managed to get [beer] barrels delivered by tractor. 

“We have been all right, touch wood, at the minute. 

“It depends on how long this lasts and how long we can keep it up, but at the minute everybody is just helping out and chipping in so it's great.”

Andrew Crowther, one of the directors of community pub the Gardeners Rest, Sheffield (pictured), described the site as lucky to escape damage.

He said: “If water had come up another inch, we would have lost the pub. That's how close we were.”

The pub lost out on takings after it decided to close on Thursday night (7 November) and evacuate to ensure staff safety. 

It also lost some beer after barrels overturned in the cellar, but the staff were just pleased the pub itself was safe.

Flood damage caused the pub to close for around two years in 2007, heightening staff nerves about the potential of the site flooding again. 

Regulars helped the site reopen on Friday morning (8 November), with one even buying sandbags to help protect the pub. 

Crowther explained: “We're a community pub so we are all volunteers. The morale has been great, everybody works together. It's too good a pub to lose. 

“It's a fantastic little pub and everybody gets knuckled down and does what has to be done.”

The Licensed Trade Charity has advised anyone working in a pub, bar or brewery affected by flooding to reach out for assistance.

The charity offers guidance and emergency grants in addition to running a free 24/7 helpline.

Licensees can also access guidance on flood damage from the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA), which has provided advice on how to sanitise contaminated cellars and equipment.

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