“It was surreal, just absolutely surreal”
Those are the words of Chris Peters, managing director of Mytholmroyd-based Flower of Life soft drinks suppliers, after the business was ravaged by the Boxing Day floods.
Based at Orchard Business Park, Scout Road, the business unit used to produce the range of Equinox Kombucha drinks, was submerged under five feet of water.
“Everything was all over, there was stuff everywhere and it looked really dangerous,” Mr Peters said. “I had waded in because I wanted to save the hard drive. It was surreal.”
After the flood water receded, the impact of the deluge became clear and there was a total shut down of production, leading to a loss of tens of thousands of pounds.
Mr Peters added that the business struggled to fulfill orders, had to operate with damaged machinery and workers also had to take time to clean and sanitise the premises.
He said: “We lost orders, we couldn’t produce for three months and it was just at the point when we were doing really well. We had pushed and pushed over Christmas to get 87,000 bottles delivered. We’ve just about managed to catch up with orders now.”
With a £15,000 grant from the Community Foundation for Calderdale and the same from the Leeds Enterprise Partnership, it’s hoped the business will bounce back and thrive. The money will help to replace computers, fix broken machinery and help to install bathroom and kitchen facilities, as well as a reception area and office space. There are still grants available from the foundation for those affected.
Emma Woods-Bolger, from the foundation, said: “Our grants program is still open, even if you have had the council grants and our emergency grants we can still help with further funding.
“We can support people to pay higher than normal gas and electricity bills, compensate for items such as washers, dryers and fridges, pay for or compensate people if they have already bought carpets or flooring, and lots more.”
Call01422 349700 for more information.