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Sheerness cafe and Harty Church forced to shut by flooding

Flooding at Barton's Point Coastal Park, Sheerness
Flooding at Barton's Point Coastal Park, Sheerness

A popular attraction has been forced to close temporarily due to the bad weather.

Parts of Barton’s Point Coastal Park, Sheerness, have been underwater after weeks of rain.

Mandy Shade, who runs the Boathouse Cafe at the park, off Marine Parade, has had to shut as the flood water is filling up the cesspit, meaning the toilets and sinks can not be used.

The park is open but she said it was very wet with some deep puddles and, because the cafe is closed, there are no facilities.

She said: “We were able to open at the weekend but we were closed last week and the beginning of this week.

“The swans have been swimming on the grass and the level of the lake is rising, but it’s not the lake that’s causing the problems, although it’s a spectacular sight to see it so full.

“We are waiting for a tanker to empty the cesspit, but they are busy with emergencies elsewhere.

“I’d like to say thank you to everybody who has been patient and supported us – it’s appreciated.”

It is hoped the situation will be rectified by the end of this week.

Elsewhere, the rain has meant services at St Thomas’s Church at Harty had to be cancelled.

During the worst of the storm there was slight damage to the bell tower when a number of the shingle tiles blew away, allowing water to trickle into the building.

There is scaffolding around the church, which has now been made watertight and is awaiting full repairs.

Reader Paul Oldmeadow took this picture of the drainage pipe overflowing on Minster Beach
Reader Paul Oldmeadow took this picture of the drainage pipe overflowing on Minster Beach

Two services were also cancelled because the grounds were so waterlogged.

Warden Colin Patience said: “Anyone attempting to get to the church would have sunk – it was potentially dangerous.”

Reader Paul Oldmeadow, of The Broadway, Minster, said: “How fortunate the Island has been compared to other places that were flooded. We must be grateful for our flood defences.”

He walked along the beach on Monday and took this picture of the excess water coming from the drainage pipe near the White House.

“The flow took a different route, creating a small ‘river’ that ran along the shore before flowing vigorously out to sea against the waves,” he said.

“Surprising how little debris was in evidence on the beach.”

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