Remaining resident in cut-off Fishlake rally together despite being told to go
Villagers remaining in the flood-hit village of Fishlake say they are helping each other, despite the council saying it will not be helping as the advice is to leave.
Residents struggling to cope in the South Yorkshire village have criticised Doncaster Council for leaving them stranded.
But on Sunday, the council said it will not be providing “on-the-ground support” as the area is covered by a severe flood warning and the advice is for residents to evacuate.
Many parts of Fishlake remained under 3ft (1 metre) of water on Sunday after the nearby River Don burst over the top of the huge flood defences.
Those stranded in their homes were supplied with food by the Hare & Hounds pub, in the village, but landlords Angie and Scott Godfrey took to social media on Sunday to say they were “fuming” that Doncaster Council had no kept them supplied.
Addressing the council and local Labour parliamentary candidate, Ed Miliband – who visited Fishlake on Saturday, they said on Facebook: “We have been inundated with calls, messages from people wanting a HOT MEAL. These people have no electricity & are living upstairs.
“We have the equipment to cook the lunches we just need the food!!.”
Helen Edwards hands out free bacon sandwiches to villagers (Ben Birchall/PA)
In a response to comments, the pub said: “They’ve (the council) now decided no resources will be used bringing such things in when they want to evacuate those out.”
They said: “The stranded are scared to leave and risk losing what little they have left. Fuming.”
Claire Holling, who runs the Old Butchers cafe, said people spent Saturday night in the pub, with other seeking shelter and company in the church.
Speaking from her cafe, she told the PA news agency the pub and her cafe have become the centre of a community pulling together to get through.
“I just managed to get here on the back of a tractor and I live in the village,” she said.
“We’ve opened up and we’re making sure everyone has bacon and sausage sandwiches and a warm settee to sit on. It’s getting quite full in here now.
“Everyone’s pulling together and making sure vulnerable people are being looked after.”
Villager Dan Greenslade described how he is trying to get back to his flooded house after his girlfriend gave birth to their daughter on Friday.
Mr Greenslade said: “I know it’s underwater. A neighbour sent some pictures of the outside of it. But that was yesterday and they say the waters are rising.
“We’ve just decorated it all and we moved in three weeks ago to get ready for the baby.”
He added: “I’m trying to get through to Doncaster Council but nobody’s getting back to me.
Mr Greenslade said he, his girlfriend and their new baby Indie, are staying with his girlfriend’s parents in a nearby village.
He added: “I’m in same clothes I was in on Thursday.
“Luckily, some friends have been round a fetched a second-hand Moses basket and loads of second-hand clothes and stuff. So the baby’s OK. But all of her stuff is at our house.”
Mr Greenslade said: “Everybody’s helping each other out – it’s amazing.”
Damian Allen, chief executive of Doncaster Council, said: “We are concerned over reports that some residents remain in the Fishlake area.
“South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue crews are on hand to evacuate any Fishlake residents who may be stuck in their homes, and we would urge everybody to take advantage of this.
“The council are unable to offer on the ground support to residents who are in severe flood warning areas, based on advice from the Environment Agency.”
Mr Allen said a dedicated rest centre for all Fishlake residents had been set up in neighbouring Stainforth.
He said a 24-hour public information helpline has received more than 1,200 calls.