Lions roar into action with launch of flood rescue fund for victims

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A flood recovery fund has been launched in Whalley to help victims of the disaster put their lives and homes back together.

And the fund, set up by Whalley and District Lions Club, has around £15,000 in the pot already just over a month after the disaster affected 250 households an d 1,500 residents.

Organisers are hoping to boost the coffers through a series of fund raising events and donations and they are also hoping to secure match funding from the government and a series of grants. The money will be used to support the most vulnerable in both Whalley, Billington and Read such as the elderly, families with young children and and those not covered by insurance. Grants of up to £500 are being awarded to many people who have lost the essential items needed to live safely and comfortably but as only a limited number of people meet this criteria fundraising is set to continue throughout the year.

Several agencies are offering grant support and Lions’ club volunteers are helping residents to fill in forms so there is a quick turnaround on the cash coming through.

Club president Gillian Darbyshire said: “I am really proud of everyone who has come forward to care for each other in our time of need. So many people have made a huge difference by volunteering, donating and helping to make life more bearable for our residents.

“The village is trying to get back to normal as soon as possible but without the dedication of more than 1,000 volunteers who turned out to help we could be witnessing a harder story one month on from the floods.’’

The battle is now on the restore the award winning village back to its former glory. Neil Martin, the interim chairman of the Whalley Chamber of Trade said: “We have supported businesses to get back to trade and the business community reflects the true independent spirit of the village.

“Events are being planned to keep the vibrancy of the area going ad help people get their lives back to normal after such a trauma.’’

Donations to the flood fund can be made via email on