Residents of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire have been complaining to the media that their tragedy is being forgotten and that the government is simply not doing enough to help their plight.
"It is terrible," said Janice Billingsworth from Hull. "People don’t seem to understand the nightmare we are facing. Carpets, furniture, wallpaper, all ruined. It’s a total tragedy."
Those in the flooded areas said that they just did not expect to experience such total devastation to the contents of their cupboard under the stairs in twenty-first century Britain.
"It is ok for the people of Bangladesh. The thousands that die in flooding there have never known the hardship of laying a laminate floor," wailed Ms Billingsworth. "The tens of millions of people who are left homeless will never have queued up for half an hour at their local B&Q."
Those hit worst by the flooding and who have lost sofas and even kitchen units feel that with the attention of the media focussed elsewhere they are not getting the aid they require.
"When there are tens of thousands of people in Bangladesh or India spending weeks sitting in tree-tops waiting for the torrents of floodwater to subside enough to let a small reed boat save their children it gets on the telly," she said fighting back the tears. "Whereas no one seems interested that we have had to take up not only the laminate floor in the kitchen but also the tiles that were underneath!"
It isn’t just the media that is the target of the resident’s complaints, they feel that the government, and new Prime Minister Gordon Brown, should be doing more to help.
"When we bought the house the survey said that there was a risk of flooding but we spent the insurance money for flood cover on a new plasma TV. Which was also ruined." explained an emotional Ms Billingsworth. "I don’t see why I should pay for a new one. Taxpayers from all over the UK should as it is their water not mine. Or something."
Businesses have also suffered from the deluge. Gill Binsworth, landlady at the Riverside Tavern said that her pub had been ruined and wanted to know who was going to help.
"We bought the pub eight years ago, we fell in love with it at first sight when we realised that we could charge extra for our beer since the place commanded such excellent views of the river. It was lovely with the river coming right up to the edge of the beer garden. Now it is in the snug," she said. "This is the third time it has flooded and I am getting a bit fed up putting new carpets in. I now know how the people of Mumbai felt when a thousand people died in flooding there last year."
Surprisingly one area of industry that traditionally leads the calls for increased government or EU aid has been silent.
"Aye, well you know, rain and water, loss of crops. That’s just part of farming" said a spokesman for the National Farmer’s Union. "Although I don’t know who is going to pay for the replacement of my wood burning Aga stove."
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
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When people write this stuff, why, oh, why won't someone think of the little carpets?
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