The flood water has receded, the TV crews have moved on and the town of Newton Stewart is left to try and get back to normal - however long that will take no-one knows.
Many businesses on the east side of Victoria Street are still out of action after the River Cree broke its banks in spectacular fashion on Wednesday December 30, after unprecedented amounts of rain were dumped on the area by Storm Frank.
On Monday morning, only Cinnamon Cafe was operating normally. After that every other cafe shop and office were out of action. The pet shop was open despite having no electricity, but the staff were counting by sales using old fashioned sums written down on a piece of paper. Tommy Marr, whose financial company’s office was affected said he was delighted that the electricity had been restored to the street on the Sunday only to be plunged back into darkness a few hours later. Scottish Power engineers were busy trying to resolve the problem on Monday.
But for the rest, including The Galloway Gazette, it will take time to get back up and running again. Owens the butchers are planning to open shortly and Craig Andrew’s from the Belted Galloway, always on the frontline of any flooding event in Newton Stewart, said he hoped to have the resteraunt and visitor centre open again “within a week”.
Just a hundred yards further along the car park,The Riverside day centre has been badly affected, with the wooden flood pushed up into peaks due to water damage. Staff at the day centre are working hard to get the centre cleared and cleaned any they would welcome volunteers who want to help them out coming along on Wednesday. If you can give some time to the day centre please contact Susan on 01671 402010.
There will also be a meeting of the Cree Valley Community Council in the McMillan Hall on Wednesday at 7pm, and the community council are encouraging as many people as possible to come along to hear what will be the way ahead for Newton Stewart regarding flood defences in future.