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Wednesday, 23 April 2014

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North Cumbrian pub floods just months after £7,000 upgrade

A pub has suffered extensive flood damage just months after a refurbishment.

Robert Cowan photo
Robert Cowan

The Golden Fleece in Ruleholme, near Brampton, was under three inches of water on Thursday.

Its owner, who only took over last August and then carried out a £7,000 refurbishment, has had to close the pub while he clears up the damage. Robert Cowan, 55, said the pub was bringing in more than £10,000 a month.

“It’s quite a massive setback. We were only just starting to build the business up and we had quite a loyal clientele,” he said.

Mr Cowan employed 30 staff, including three on a full-time basis. They are now helping him to carry out repair work but he is unsure about how long he can continue to pay for this.

The pub is not near a river or other body of water.

Water rolled into the pub off a neighbouring field, when Mr Cowan was not working.

He said: “I got a phone call from the chef who said ‘The place is flooding’. I was thinking, ‘Flooding, what are you talking about?’ so I came pelting over and I was greeted by someone saying ‘Here’s a pair of wellies’.”

Mr Cowan has had to remove a laminate wooden floor and carpet in the clean-up job. He will also have to replace most of the building’s plaster work.

He is unsure how long the pub will be closed for.

Its function room was unaffected, but, as the kitchen was flooded, it is unlikely it will be used for events. However, Mr Cowan hopes to be able to let people stay in its accommodation on a “bed and breakfast” basis.

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