Devon flood victim calls marines to help clear up garden

Royal Marines have helped a woman clear up her garden after it was covered in mud following a flash flood.

By John Ayres & Rebecca Ricks

Royal Marines from the Commando Training Centre, in Lympstone, Devon, came to the aid of Ms Pinfold

Hilary Pinfold, from Newton Poppleford in Devon, said she contacted the local barracks and was “delighted” when more than 40 marines turned up to help.

Dane, one of the marines, said it “feels good” to be able to help the local community.

A 6ft (1.8m) wall in Ms Pinfold’s garden collapsed during the downpours, and the downstairs of her house was also flooded.

Ms Pinfold’s garden following the flood

“We were getting a bit downhearted at the weekend about the amount of work that we’ve got to do and didn’t see, even with volunteers, how we could get it done,” she said.

Ms Pinfold, a nurse, said she made a phone call to the local barracks, Commando Training Centre, Lympstone, after a friend suggested they might help.

Royal Marines helped to build a sandbag wall to offer some extra protection to the garden

“What they’ve done in just a few hours is amazing, it would’ve taken weeks.

“This is part of what King Charles III said in his Coronation mandate, that he wanted to see communities working together and I think that’s what you’re seeing here.”

Newton Poppleford was badly hit by the flash flooding

Matthew, one of the commandos, said: “She needed help digging up all the mud that came through from the farmer’s field.

“It [the garden] looks quite good now, but it was quite a mess when we first got here. It was under a lot of mud and we just had to shift it out the way.”

Ms Pinfold said builders were expected to start work on her house in late June.

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