‘It was almost like a bomb had hit us’ - cafe owner thanks those who came to her aid

The owner of a specialist cafe giving opportunities to the learning disabled has thanked the community for its help after falling trees damaged her home and vehicle.

Three trees smashed into the house leaving holes in the roof.
Three trees smashed into the house leaving holes in the roof.

Carole Goulding, director of GPC specialist tea room C.I.C in Friskney, said she thought a bomb had exploded when three trees smashed through the roof during strong winds on October 31.

Gales tore down seven trees in the grounds, smashing into her roof, landing on vehicles, wiping out power cables and hitting a dog pen with animals inside.

One tree landed on a new taxi that had just been bought by the cafe to collect assistants and deliver food to vulnerable customers. This was left a write-off even before it had even been used.

The new taxi bought by the cafe was also destroyed by a falling tree.

Since then, the community has rallied around Carole and the cafe helping to remove the trees and provide temporary cover for her damaged roof. Fortunately, the tearoom which only opened in the summer, sustained minor damage but had to close for a few days due to damage to the nearby house. It re-opened on Monday.

Speaking to the Standard just just after the incident, Carole said: “What a nightmare. I was in the house when the wind came. It was almost like a bomb had hit us. The whole house shook. Three trees hit it. There are three holes in the roof. Another tree hit the dog pen but fortunately the dogs were not injured.

“The electricity cables coming down left half the village without power. It was unbelievable.”

Carole said she struggled to get workmen out to help her in the days that followed, but that members of the community have been ‘amazing’ in their quick response. There was just masses of people from the community coming to help,” said Carole. “I had customers ringing us asking if there was anything they could do, and people just turning up with brushes.

“One customer arranged for four men with chainsaws to turn up. So at one point we had six chainsaws on the go trying to cut up all the fallen wood. Then James from One Point Roofing in the village offered to help and sent a man with a transporter to pull the trees off the roof. James later put some sheeting across our roof. I had never even met him before. The support has been amazing and overwhelming.”

A crowdfunding page has been set up to help Carole, raising more than £1,907 so far. To make a donation, visit her GoFundMe page.