Northumberland shop hit by devastating floods is set to reopen

A mill shop hit by devastating floods is hoping to fully reopen within days.

Wednesday, 14th August 2019, 1:40 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th August 2019, 3:36 pm
Flooding inside Otterburn Mill. Picture courtesy of Otterburn Mill.

Otterburn Mill estimates the weekend deluge caused at least £50,000 damage to stock with the additional cost of replacing fixtures and fittings still to be calculated.

The ground floor of the main shop was covered in two feet of water after the nearby River Rede burst its banks in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Dozens of staff rushed to the premises to rescue clothing, footwear and other outdoor accessories and move them across to the business’s nearby cafe and office building.

Floodwater outside Otterburn Mill. Picture courtesy of Otterburn Mill.

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Otterburn Mill marketing officer Louise Shaw: “It was devastating for us all and manic with all the staff coming in and helping to move the stock out.

“We are all really upset although we appreciate all the offers of help we have received. The staff and fire brigade were brilliant.”

Rescued stock is now on sale in a temporary shop above the cafe while the main store is itself now partly open selling damaged goods at unexpected sale prices.

Miss Shaw expects the main shop to fully reopen “at the end of this week or the beginning of next week” once carpets have been cleaned and dried out.

She added: “The shop has been open since 1996 and we have never experienced anything like this.

“We have spoken to people who worked here when it was a mill and they say it was flooded around five times between the 1950s and 1970s.”

Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service were alerted to pump water away from the site on a wet and busy weekend throughout the county.

They also rushed to Paperhaugh, near Rothbury, where three people escaped unharmed on Saturday from a stranded car.

Around 30 homes in Otterburn suffered a loss of power on Saturday after a transformer was switched off while firefighters and Northumberland County Council also dealt with localised flooding in

Alnwick, Elsdon, Rothbury, Newton on the Moor and Longhorsley.Among the roads to temporarily close were the B6342 at Rothbury, the B6320 between the A68 and Otterburn, the C180 at Holystone and the C178 at Callaly.