Monday, 27 September 2021

Double blow for local business

A RESTAURATEUR suffered a double blow when his windows were smashed by vandals and then his premises were flooded.

Two youngsters were caught on CCTV throwing a brick through three kitchen windows of Shaun Dickens at the Boathouse in Station Road, Henley, on the evening of Sunday, January 5.

They were boarded up but just four days later flood water came into the restaurant, damaging floorboards.

Staff from Hobbs of Henley, which owns the building, pumped out the water to try to protect the wood but owner Shaun Dickens fears he may need a new floor.

He said: “We’ve got an elevated floor that is hollow underneath and the water went to the back of the restaurant. We watched it since the banks burst hoping it wouldn’t come up but it did. We did all we could by getting everything off the floor and moving the furniture.”

The building has previously flooded but this was the first time it has been affected since becoming La Barca restaurant three years ago. The restaurant had been closed anyway for its annual break. It was due to re-open today (Friday).

Mr Dickens said: “It’s a bonus to have a restaurant on the river but it can come and bite you on the bum.”

Police are investigating the vandal attack. Anyone with information should call the Thames Valley Police non-emergency number 101.

The Angel on the Bridge pub had to close its kitchen on Monday due to flooding and had to turn away a table for eight people. The pub itself closed on Thursday last week as the riverside seating area was covered in up to 3ft of water.

On Thursday, firefighters helped staff at the Red Lion hotel pump out 1ft of water from the basement. Sam Gill, who owns the hotel, said the cellar had been flooded previously so wasn’t used any more.

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