A flood-ravaged village to the south of Preston is seeing donations pour in to help it get back to normality.Advertisement
Croston remains on red alert for Environment Agency flood warnings as tens of homes have been flooded during the Boxing Day downpours.
Now an Ashton-on-Ribble woman is seeking to help residents get back on their feet and kick-start their clean up campaign.
Sarah Pattison has already raised nearly £1,500 to help the village where members of her family live.
The 31-year-old accounts manager who works in Preston said: “We went down on Sunday to Town Road to help my family and it’s just devastating.
“You walk along and it’s just awful. There’s kids toys from Christmas piled up and you know they won’t work again.
“We’d been warned about the flooding risk so everything had been piled up and moved upstairs, but the water was just so high.”
Emergency services remain in Croston as the River Douglas could breach a ‘gap’ in the flood defences, causing yet more heartbreak for the community.
Sarah was quick to praise the efforts of fire crews, Chorley Council and the police.
She said: “They’ve been brilliant. The response since it happened has been absolutely first-class.
“And not just from the emergency services but from everyone.
“There are still homes without power and you see everyone checking on others regularly, making sure people are okay and that they’ve got everything they need.”
Sarah has made arrangements for her flooded relatives, Jean Hampson, 77, and Jason Hampson, 39, to stay with her and other family.
Croston Sports and Social Club has not been affected by the flooding and has turned into base camp for the relief effort, with hot meals being served and families sheltering until they can get back into their homes.
However the Croston Community Centre has not been so fortunate.
Sarah said the flooding has left the floor of the centre “looking like a wave” as the water ripped it up.
A big clean up of the community centre is due to take place from 10.30am on Tuesday.
The fundraising page set up by Sarah and her family is to help pay for the insurance excess for the community centre and other local residents.
She said: “Since the floods three years ago there’s a lot of homes that cannot be insured or the excess is really high.
“To give you an idea, the insurance excess on the community centre alone is £5,000.
“It’s heartening to see so many donations since we set it up last night.
“I’ve spoken with the community group and they’re ready to receive the donations, and will distribute them to ensure it goes to the right places.”
A Facebook page called Croston Lancashire Floods Boxing Day 2015 has also been set up to help share information.
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service have been pumping water from the Moss area of Croston back into the River Douglas.
The Environent Agency is also working to repair a hole in the bank wall of the Douglas.
Both these pieces of work need to take place before any flood warnings can be lifted.
Chief Superintendent Damian Darcy, of Lancashire Police, said: “At this time we are dealing with the potential for a specific issue with the banking along the River Douglas south of Croston.”
“We are currently monitoring the situation and although the banking has not failed, we are concerned this could affect residents in the area. We want to make sure that everyone is aware and prepared.”
Related: What you need to know if your home has been affected by flooding
The Environment Agency has three severe flood warnings, which mean a risk to life, in place for the River Yarrow at Croston.
The Met Office has issued a weather warning of more heavy rain from the early hours of Wednesday morning.
You can donate to help Croston by visiting the Crowdfunding website.
Do you live in Croston? Have you been helping with the flood relief efforts? Let us know in the comments below