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Storms Eunice and Franklin leave trail of destruction and flooding at Daisy May's Farm in Elsenham



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A popular visitor farm in Elsenham suffered extensive damage and flooding in Storms Eunice and Franklin, leaving the owner facing huge clear-up costs.

Numerous trees came crashing down on animal shelters and picnic areas on Daisy May's Farm's 20-acre Hall Road site as Storm Eunice took hold on Friday while the farm was left underwater following heavy rain on Sunday evening from Storm Franklin.

High winds also flipped field shelters onto their roofs and tore down fencing. All of the farm's animals were unharmed.

An animal shelter is crushed by a fallen tree at Daisy May's Farm in Elsenham (55015392)
An animal shelter is crushed by a fallen tree at Daisy May's Farm in Elsenham (55015392)

Owner Rachel Berry said the weather had left a devastating trail of destruction throughout its wooded areas and pastures, meaning it would have to employ the services of tree surgeons to help clear the site.

"The storms have hit us hard and there are many trees down on the farm. Some have squashed shelters," she said. "We had to strap down the field shelters just to stop them taking off and we've lost some fencing as well so we're trying to sort that out.

"Then last night we had even more trees down and then the farm was flooded as well because some of the trees came down across the stream. The water was gone by this morning, but it's the devastation it leaves behind.

The entrance to Daisy May's Farm under water on Monday morning (55021399)
The entrance to Daisy May's Farm under water on Monday morning (55021399)

"We have to replace all the animals' bedding. We'll be taking the next few days to clear up... Thursday (February 24) will be our next day of opening to the public."

Rachel appealed for public support to help the working and community farm, which is a not-for-profit organisation run by volunteers, through its latest crisis. It has previously been affected by road closures and flooding, and this latest incident, coupled with an ongoing appeal to fund a £2,000 vet bill for resident goat Billy, who suffered a broken leg, has left them under huge financial pressure.

"We do everything we can for our animals, and while most people would have put the goat to sleep, we persevered and he's like brand new now, but we've got a huge vets' bill."

She explained how public donations last winter had enabled Daisy May's to provide new shelters on higher ground for their smaller animals, such as rabbits and guinea pigs, who had survived the storms unscathed. "It's nice to be able to show where the money's going and the fact that our small animals are at the top of the land and are safe."

Fallen trees litter the farm (55021382)
Fallen trees litter the farm (55021382)

The farm, founded in 2011, has a wide range of animals in its care, including goats, sheep, pigs, horses, ducks, chickens and rabbits. It rescues and rehomes animals and runs its own breeding programmes. It covers its running costs by opening to the public, offering a wide range of attractions and allowing visitors to enjoy the animals.

In summer it runs a café and has a play area for children. It hosts fun-themed open days at Easter, throughout school holidays and for Hallowe'en, and provides work placements for students, group trips for schools and supports people with learning difficulties and disabilities through East Herts and Uttlesford.

To find out more about Daisy May's Farm visit its website at www.daisymaysfarm.org.

A tree fell across the stream, adding to flooding problems at the Elsenham community farm (55021389)
A tree fell across the stream, adding to flooding problems at the Elsenham community farm (55021389)
A field shelter lies upturned on its roof (55021405)
A field shelter lies upturned on its roof (55021405)
Billy the goat is recovering from a broken leg, but the farm has been left with a huge vets' bill (55028407)
Billy the goat is recovering from a broken leg, but the farm has been left with a huge vets' bill (55028407)
The new small animals shelter which was funded by donations (55028412)
The new small animals shelter which was funded by donations (55028412)


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