Nursery kids are counting the cost of the Calderdale floods.

Staff at the Waters Edge Children’s Day Nursery in Elland have decided to close their play gym after suffering the devastating impact of the Boxing Day floods.

They have had to use the space it occupied in their building to house the nursery unit and have had to scrap the play gym.

The nursery staff have thanked the community for their amazing help after the massive clean-up which followed the floods.

Owner Joanne Wood saw the nursery unit destroyed in the Park Road basement when the River Calder burst its banks.

Joanne said: “We are obviously devastated that we will have to lose the play gym but we just couldn’t face going through what we have again.

“To see 14 years of hard work wiped away by the floods was utterly soul destroying.”

Waters Edge Chldren’s Day Nursery's Facebook page

Joanne said the response from the local community had been overwhelming.

“We were inundated with offers of help. People were donating toys, stopping their vans as they drove by to help, bringing us food and refreshments – people have been absolutely amazing. We can’t thank them enough.

“At the moment, we have relocated our baby room and staff to premises very close by, thanks to Gareth Henderson at Orchard Environmental who has kindly provided space for us, and it’s so close that we are able to offer the same extremely high standards of care there as we did here.”

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She added: “People came along and gave their time, taking on really difficult and, at times, dirty jobs such as shovelling away the mud, and for that we are eternally grateful.

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“The community has been unbelievable. People we didn’t know were turning up to help on foot and with their vans – it was overwhelming. They even brought us kettles and bottled water as well as food, toys and cleaning equipment. One family, who were up from London visiting relatives, insisted on stopping off on their way home with donations.”

Toddlers at Waters Edge Nursery meet some of those who have helped out after the floods

Ikea at Birstall not only donated furniture but built it before delivering it to the nursery. Tesco gave new toys and cleaning equipment; Master Matting in Halifax donated made to measure play mats; Pureclean UK jet washed the playground to make it mud free; and Morrisons and Greggs both provided food and refreshments for the clean-up team.

And there was a surprise for the children when retired firemen who make up the group Tunnel 2 Towers arrived in a couple of fire engines. They helped to rip out the ruined flooring from downstairs then washed away the mud using their power hoses.

More toys were donated by the local action group Flooded With Toys, run by Cheryl Shaw-Peters.