Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Bishops Tawton butchers will rise from the flood waters

09:32 01 May 2013

Katie Wells outside the premises of DI Elliott butchers in Bishops Tawton, awaiting a full refit after the floods.

Katie Wells outside the premises of DI Elliott butchers in Bishops Tawton, awaiting a full refit after the floods.


The Elliott family plans to reopen DI Elliott butchers this summer as they continue to recover from December’s floods.

A family who run the popular DI Elliot butchers shop in Bishops Tawton are keen to assure their customers they have not been beaten by December’s devastating floods.

On the evening of Saturday, December 22, the family had to abandon their beloved business after the Taw burst its banks and the torrent put the shop under four feet of water.

Since that terrible night they have been working hard to see the premises return to life and although the insurance process has taken longer than expected, they hope to hold a grand reopening this summer.

The damage to stock, expensive equipment, fridges, freezers and the building itself runs into tens of thousands of pounds, but Grace Elliott, son Dudley and daughter Katie Wells have no intention of giving in.

“We want to make it clear to our customers we are going to reopen, but we just can’t know when and we have had to be guided by the insurance people,” said Katie.

“But we do appreciate the kindness and support of everyone through all this and we hope to relaunch the shop in the summer.”

Grace added: “We thank all our customers for their patience in waiting. We are opening as soon as we can – we can’t do any more than that.

“We just want to get in, get on and work hard to build our business up again, but at the moment we are in limbo.”

The kindness of local people helped save Christmas on the day of the floods, as Martin Johnson of Combe Martin Meats made a mercy dash in his lorry through the flood waters to reach Bishops Tawton and rescue £10,500 of Christmas meat ordered by DI Elliott’s customers.

“He loaded up all the stock we had and took it back to his own chiller, we are so grateful to him because he came through all the floods in Braunton to do it,” Katie continued.

“We had more than 100 turkeys here, chickens, ducks; it was a lot of stock. We’re very grateful to the people of the village too, who all came to help by making a human chain to load up the lorry and to attempt to move our machinery away from the water.”

Martin returned the next day with the meat and it reached local Christmas dinner tables after the family were able to sell through the farm shop at Fishleigh Farmhouse Foods in Umberleigh.

The entire DI Elliott shop will need to be refitted and building work is also being carried out on Grace’s flat over the shop as well as Dudley’s house next door.

The family praised the efforts of agencies such as South West Water and the Environment Agency, which loaned them pumps to try and keep ahead of the flood water.

But they said they felt the village had been abandoned by local councils at the height of the flooding, when all efforts seemed to be turned towards Barnstaple and Braunton.

They hope something can be done to make sure it does not happen again.


Other News Stories

Volunteers at Grosvenor Church with just some of the Christmas shoeboxes

Thousands donate boxes for needy children around the world

Read more
Yesterday, 10:00
Go North Devon staff and volunteers collecting for the SOS Appeal. Picture: Tony Freeman

Appeal to North Devon companies to help preserve ring and ride plus shopmobility services

Read more
Yesterday, 08:17
Was this artwork created by a celebrity? Place your bid in the Children's Hospice SW charity online auction

Children’s Hospice South West hosts secret online charity auction

Read more
Fri, 17:20
Libby Ross of Devon and Severn IFCA tags a blonde ray in Bideford Bay. Picture: Steph Davies

Fishermen join tagging scheme to prove ray stocks are abundant off the North Devon coast

Read more
Fri, 15:25
Frederick and Agnes Reed

American family seeking to reunite their grandfather with his beloved wife, who is buried somewhere in Bideford

Read more
Fri, 13:38
North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple. Picture: Andy Keeble

Healthcare trust to keep impact on services minimal throughout industrial action

Read more
Fri, 12:39
The Coca-Cola Christmas lorry will be in Barnstaple Square until 8pm today. Picture: Andy Keeble

Famous red lorry brings festive cheer to town Square

Read more
Thu, 16:51
Fore Street Christmas market will be undercover this year. Picture: Sally Almond

Sunday’s event will go ahead as planned, but undercover in case of inclement weather

Read more
Thu, 15:19
The proposed hotel in Westward Ho!

Planning inspector overturns Torridge District Council decision to refuse ‘in principle’ plans for 15-bed ‘Whotel’

Read more
Thu, 12:05
Could Eleanor Grant's song In Your Arms be a Christmas number one?

Teenage singer’s song for new animated movie about the Louisa lifeboat launch makes its bid for festive chart success

Read more

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas Magazine

Click here for your ultimate guide to
Christmas in North Devon

Local Weather



max temp: 12°C

min temp: 9°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications