Ben and Sam Shoesmith moved into their first home together at the end of 2018 and have now seen their terrace cottage in Lower Bullingham, Hereford flooded twice.

"We knew the lane flooded and were prepared for that, but we never thought it would ever get into the house. It's devastating."

But on one level, Ben is feeling lucky this time round: "Last time we had no idea what to do. This time we do. I feel sorry for people experiencing this for the first time.

"You could say that we're pros this time, and we know how to deal with it and what to expect from the insurance company. I would advise anyone to keep chasing them up – we could have been back in a week quicker in October if we'd done that."


In October last year, the house was flooded to a depth of six inches. This time, having moved to his parents' home in Kings Acre, he didn't know, on Monday evening what the damage was, but was expecting much worse.

"Last time we had to move out for two weeks, but we haven't been able to get back (Ben was hoping to get to his house on Tuesday afternoon, after finishing his shift at Castle House Hotel), so we don't know how bad it is. I understand that it could be up to waist height.

"We moved everything upstairs the day before (Saturday) and on the day, but we don't know what it's done to the house."

"I got home from work on Saturday at 11pm, and the lane was dry, and there was nothing in the brook, and on Sunday at 6am it was lapping at the steps. It had risen four feet from the brook in the six or seven hours - it was scary quick."

His wife and mum having moved most of the furniture the day before, "we just got out as quickly as we could. We knew the roads might get cut off and cars are under water on our lane.

"I feel really badly for people who never imagined their house would get flooded. It's so sad.

"The first time, you are in shock, panicking and don't know what to do."

Ben adds that, when they left, their neighbour had moved upstairs and taken provisions with her. "As far as I am aware, she's still there. That must be scary."

Seeing a picture of his house on Tuesday morning, Ben said: "You can clearly see the tidemark on the house, we're terrified to see what damage has been done."