December 9 2013 Latest news:
Withycombe family Jodie wilkerson and children Eaton and Isaac with friends Nicole and Luke Thomas and Zena Hawkins from King's Garden Centre. The family are thanking those who have helped rebuild their garden after last year's severe flooding. Picture by Alex Walton. Ref exe 1348-36-13AW
Monday, September 9, 2013
A Withycombe family who lost their garden in devastating floods last year have had it restored, thanks to the efforts of their friends and the generosity of a local business.
When Jodie and Daryl Wilkerson moved into their home in Brackenwood at the beginning of last year, their main aim was to give their sons, Eaton, 4, and Isaac, 1, a garden to play in.
However, their dreams were dealt a huge blow last July, when the surging Withycombe Brook burst its banks, taking much of the garden away and leaving the rest of it as a mud bath.
After months of negotiations with their insurer the family managed to get the wall repaired. However, as this summer rolled around it looked as if the children would be stuck indoors again, with most of the garden still unusable.
However, that’s when their friends decided enough was enough, and they would give the family the garden they deserved.
Writing to local businesses to appeal for gardening supplies, they heard back from King’s Garden Centre the same day.
Choosing a weekend when Jodie was away, so it would be a surprise, Nicole and Luke Thomas, Jenna and Sam Burnett, Rosie Johnson, Dave Harry and Matt Hayes joined Daryl to give the garden a makeover, laying turf for the large new lawn and installing plants inside 48 hours.
Nicole said: “It was a lot of work. We got halfway through and thought there’s no way we’re going to get there, but we managed to get it all done.
Jodie said: “We are so grateful to our friends for giving up their whole weekend to do our garden for us. We would still be in a mud pit if it wasn’t for all their help and the garden would never have been finished in time to enjoy it this summer.
“We can’t thank King’s enough. We’ve eventually got the garden we bought the house for.
“Even now when I open the curtains I’m surprised it’s green and not brown. Since we’ve had it done the kids haven’t been inside!”
King’s owner Richard King said: “Kings are very much part of the community and we were delighted to help the Wilkerson family. We wish them all the best and hope they enjoy their new garden.”