In a true display of the spirit of Christmas, a kind gesture from a construction company has stopped a local shop being forced to close. Pynes Farm Shop, in Budleigh Salterton, was cut off from the main road by flood water along South Farm Road, but thanks to Kier at Lower Otter, customers are able to receive their Christmas goodies.
Shannon Brown www.devonlive.com
Henry Riddell, shop manager, said they are “used to the road flooding” but the recent “more extreme” weather – and a ‘waterlogged van’ has made access to the shop impossible over recent days. The Lower Otter Restoration Project, currently being completed down the road from the shop, will aim to prevent future flooding when complete in Summer 2023.
Until then, however, heavy rain still causes flooding along the road. Recent heavy rain has caused more flooding than usual, and Henry said the shop has been cut off from the main road. But, thanks to their neighbours at KIER construction, working on the restoration project, the store is able to open in the run up to Christmas – and the spirit of the season is still alive.
After posting on Facebook on Tuesday, December 20, that flooding had forced the road closure, the farm shop said they’ll “bring the shop to you” by setting up a pop-up shop in their site buildings. The temporary new location is at Kier Site Offices, Granary Lane, EX9 6EW.
“As you turn off the main road to us as normal, instead of going left down the hilll, go slightly right then the entrance is on your left,” a Facebook post said. Henry said it was “less of a drive” to get to the shop, and the new location is right on the main road.
Pynes Farm Shop has temporarily moved into KIER at Lower Otter so customers can still get their orders in time for Christmas (Image: Henry Riddle)
The Facebook said: “Unfortunately South Farm Road is now not only still flooded, but also blocked by a waterlogged van. We don’t think the road will be passable before Christmas, which is clearly a disaster for us.
“But we do have a plan. You can’t get through to us, so we’ll bring the shop to you! Thanks to a lovely offer from our friends at KIER at Lower Otter we can open on Thursday. We are going to do a pop up shop in their site buildings so you can all come and get your veg and meats and goodies. (and collect your turkey orders etc!)
“We will be open 9am to 5pm Thursday, 9am to 5pm Friday and 9am to 1pm Saturday. All you have to do is follow the farm shop signs pointing in to the Kier work site at the start of South Farm Road. There will be plenty of car parking and it will be clear where to go.
“Thanks for your understanding at this difficult time, we appreciate your ongoing support of our small family business. We will be accepting cash and card.”
The store will be open till 5pm today, between 9am-5pm on Friday, and 9am-1pm on Christmas Eve (Image: Henry Riddell)
KIER at Lower Otter yesterday said it was “looking forward to welcoming Pynes Farm Shop” to the site, but reminded shoppers that it was an active and working building site.
“The pop up shop is going to be situated in the canteen, but what we’d like to remind everyone that it is still a working (albeit slowed for Christmas) site. Please can everyone visiting be mindful of this, travel slow into the site and park in the dedicated area as some teams are still working.
“The ground is slightly uneven, so please also be mindful if unsteady on your feet or using walking aids. It is also still wet, so sensible footwear is advised. Please note that Kier and partners, will not accept any responsibility for any issues that might occur when visiting site as a result of this pop up event.”