Widespread devastation hit Mirfield after the River Calder surged to record-breaking levels during a Boxing Day deluge.
Roads, businesses and playing fields in the town, especially the in Lower Hopton and Battyeford areas, were swamped with rainwater following heavy storms.
Businessman Graham Ervine estimates that he has suffered £15,000-£20,000 worth of damage to his stock and property – which will take him six months to recover from financially.
The warehouses of his Mirfield Mill Carpets and Design Contract Flooring companies, based in Holme Bank Mills off Station Road, were covered in water which rose to three feet.
Mr Ervine, 53, of Springfield Park, said: “We got hit pretty bad on Boxing Day, as did other small businesses.
“It hit Design Contract Flooring at about 10 in the morning and we had to abandon ship. It was up to two-and-a-half or three feet.
“It’s all been pretty devastating,” he added. “I would like to thank all the people – friends and strangers – for their help during the past few days.
“That’s the bit that’s got me emotional – complete strangers coming to help. They’ve been superb.”
Mr Ervine has vowed to help homeowners and other businesses affected by the floods once he re-opens on January 4.
Those who need carpets re-fitting can approach him to do the job for no more than the basic supplier price, and for which he will take no profits.
After the banks of the River Calder burst, the Ledgard Bridge stretch rose to 5.25m high, breaking the highest recorded level of 5.1m; at Heaton Lodge it rose to 3.15m, where the record was 3.8m; and in Dewsbury it reached 5.61m, breaking the 5.41m record.
Businesses which had already been hit by floods earlier in the month , including the Ship pub on Steanard Lane, suffered once again.
Pictures sent in by reader Stephen Ellis (top) show goal posts on the Battyeford playing fields to have been half-submerged. Others showed the area surrounding Mirfield Railway Station, along with Battyeford Toll Bridge and businesses surrounding Fir Cottage.
Water surrounded the Pear Tree pub, which narrowly avoided flooding after landlord Alan Ingle made a quick dash for sandbags – and he believes trade actually increased following the deluge.
Mr Ingle, 55, said: “Everywhere was flooded and you get people coming to have a look. Trade was tremendous because people were coming down watching the river. It made a very busy lunchtime.”
The landlord rebuilt the Huddersfield Road pub’s garden after taking over in 2010, raising it by 18 inches, which he thinks is partly why the building was spared.
A Kirklees Council statement read: “As a result of the heavy rain on Boxing Day and Monday, we received a number of calls about flooding to the road network in Kirklees. We also received requests for sandbags which we delivered where possible.
“Only a small number of reports were made about flooding affecting residential properties, and these came from across Kirklees.”
After the Met Office issued a yellow alert for heavy rain from Tuesday night to Wednesday afternoon, the council and emergency services were preparing for possible further flooding as a result and said they would respond appropriately.
Contact Mr Ervine on 07724462025 or on 01924 493244. See this week’s paper for three pages of coverage.