Com­mu­nity hit by the floods

The Jewish Chronicle - - FRONT PAGE - BY NAOMI FIRSHT

COM­MU­NI­TIES IN Manch­ester, Leeds and York es­caped mostly un­scathed from the lat­est bout of flood­ing af­fect­ing the coun­try, with the worst af­fected suf­fer­ing power cuts, bro­ken phone lines and soggy gar­dens.

But Celia Clyne Ban­quet­ing were not so lucky — the well-known kosher caterer were hit by ris­ing wa­ter lev­els at its premises in Bury, Greater Manch­ester at the week­end.

Com­pany di­rec­tor Barry Clyne said the dam­age was con­sid­er­able. “It will take sev­eral months to get back to nor­mal,” he said.

Things could have been worse. Much of the sup­plies and equip­ment in the build­ing had been re­moved to Birm­ing­ham where the com­pany is ca­ter­ing the Lim­mud con­fer­ence.

Mr Clyne pledged that all up­com­ing book­ings would be hon­oured de­spite the flood­ing. “We will use al­ter­na­tive kitchens and ware­houses. Noth­ing will change. It’s “busi­ness as nor­mal”.

In Manch­ester the Jewish Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Coun­cil said homes in the Jewish com­mu­nity in the Lower Broughton area nar­rowly avoid flood­ing af­ter the nearby River Ir­well broke its banks.

Ni­cola and Jonathan Gold­stone in Bury feared the worst when wa­ter from the River Roch be­hind their house flooded the gar­den, but the wa­ter be­gan re­ced­ing be­fore it reached the house.

“As the day went on the river got higher and higher, then came into gar­den. A couple of strides away from be­ing in the house,” said Mrs Gold­stone, 33. “I’m so grate­ful it didn’t reach us.”

The couple, mem­bers of Bury He­brew Con­gre­ga­tion, took their two young chil­dren to stay with their grand­par­ents as a pre­cau­tion. The fam­ily have been with­out tele­vi­sion, in­ter­net or a phone line since Satur­day on Satur­day af­ter­noon. Mrs Gold­stone said a nearby field was com­pletely un­der­wa­ter. .

In Leeds, the city cen­tre was hit worst by the heavy rain. How­ever the com­mu­nity build­ings in north Leeds re­mained un­af­fected, suf­fer­ing only a two-hour power cut on Satur­day evening.

“All Jewish cen­tres and sy­n­a­gogues in north Leeds came through all right with Chabad Lubav­itch even re­port­ing a healthy turnout for their Shab­bat ser­vice” said com­mu­nity mem­ber John Fisher.

York was one of the worst-hit ar­eas, with large part of the city un­der wa­ter af­ter the rivers Foss and Ouse flooded.

Ben Rich, founder of the York Lib­eral com­mu­nity said mem­bers of the com­mu­nity did not live in the af­fected area.

How­ever he said he was con­cerned that the Friends Meet­ing house the com­mu­nity uses for ser­vices could be dam­aged.

Flood­ing af­fected ar­eas across the whole of the north of Eng­land af­ter days of heavy rain. Around 1,000 troops were sent to help evac­u­ate res­i­dents from homes in York­shire and Lan­cashire over the week­end.

Wa­ter lev­els have be­gun to re­cede but fore­casts of more heavy rain over the next couple of days has raised fears of fur­ther flood­ing dur­ing the week.

PHOTO: PA

A res­cue team at work in York. Right: the Gold­stone fam­ily’s back gar­den in Bury was turned into a lake af­ter a lo­cal river burst its banks

af­ter­noon be­cause of the flood­ing, and there was a power cut

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