Flood-hit Garden Centre is back from brink

The boss of a garden centre which suffered ?100,000 damage in a devastating flood has bounced back from bankruptcy.

The Four Seasons Garden and Pet Centre, in?Rochford, was flooded during the August deluge last year, forcing it to close for three weeks and leaving it on the brink of going bust.

But, supported by his customers, owner Dan Thorne is celebrating a 25 per cent boost in annual turnover just 12 months on from the flooding.

Mr Thorne said: ?The day I opened the door and saw the damage from the flood, I thought that was it. There was so much devastation I thought we were finished.

?We?d already had five break-ins that year and it was almost like the last straw. In total, the flood did about ?100,000 damage.

?We closed for three weeks and I was within seconds of calling it a day and going bankrupt.

?But even when we were closed, we had customers knocking on the door wanting to come in. We couldn?t let them because we were too damaged, but their loyalty and support kept us going.?

After turning over about ?200,000 in the previous year, since reopening Mr Thorne has enjoyed a bumper year, taking ?250,000 and even planning an expansion next year.

The centre has gone from strength to strength in the past year and this week will hold a week-long sale to say thank you to its customers who kept it going.

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