Carlisle United’s Flood Devastated Ground Restored
Carlisle United FC has thanked Esh Border Construction, a local construction company, for working round the clock to help restore its water-logged stadium.
The club said Esh Border Construction went “above and beyond” to help restore Brunton Park after it was devastated by Storm Desmond in December 2015. The massive deluge across Cumbria left a large section of the ground under several feet of water and a trail of costly damage, amounting to an initial £1million of repair work.
The team were forced to play their subsequent home games away for several weeks. But with a homecoming league clash in prospect against York City on January 23 2016, and £250,000 in lifeline revenue beckoning from an imminent FA Cup tie against Everton on January 31, the club faced a race against time to re-open Brunton Park.
Keen to support local business, the League Two side appointed Carlisle-based Esh Border Construction as the main contractor on a first phase of repair works. Work focused on the restoration of dressing rooms, electrics, running water and catering, working steadily across the Christmas and New Year period.
After successfully meeting the deadline, Carlisle United personally thanked Esh Border Construction’s Contracts Manager Richard Harris after inviting him onto the pitch in front of the home support for their clash with York City.
The re-opened Brunton Park also crucially went on to host a sell-out 17,392-capacity crowd for the visit of Everton – its biggest attendance for 27 years.
The club’s Sales and Marketing Director, Phil King said: “Esh Border Construction came with a great reputation, and they lived up to it, immediately getting started during the festive holidays with pre-planning and then getting on with the job in hand, delivering a really fast turnaround against a tight deadline. We’ve nothing but praise for them – it was a really fantastic effort and they went above and beyond to make the ground playable again. The attention to detail was incredible.
“They also helped us to host one of our biggest ever attendances, so we were delighted to have the chance of thanking them personally in front of the fans, who gave them a big cheer for their hard work.”
Esh Border Construction’s Regional Managing Director, Simon Phillips said: “We were only too pleased to help Carlisle United restore Brunton Park back to working use, and as a local company, it became much more than just a job for us. Some of our own staff had been badly affected by the flooding, and so we were passionate about getting involved and doing everything possible to alleviate the problems.
“While it was essential to get the stadium back on its feet, it was also clear that the club’s upcoming fixtures had taken on huge importance, both financially and in terms of raising morale for the whole community.
“Just as the worst of times so often bring out the best in people, our team worked hard around the clock in close partnership with the club, going the extra mile and undertaking long hours to meet the deadline. It’s particularly pleasing that in doing so, we also helped Carlisle Utd generate much-needed income at such a crucial time.
“We look forward to continuing to work closely in partnership with the club in the near future.”