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Doris' story: "I couldn’t sleep, it was terrifying"

Flood - elderly lady holding hands with volunteer© Info

“For three nights I stayed up and just watched as the water rose up and up at the back of my house. I couldn’t sleep, it was terrifying. There was nothing I could do, I felt helpless and all alone as my husband died last January.”

The days and weeks after the floods were just as unbearable for Doris Wigmore, (82), from New Hinksey in Oxford as she counted the cost of the terrible summer floods of 2007.

She said: “A lot of my things were destroyed outright, including all the expensive tools in the shed, but every day it seemed to get worse and the mould all over the wall and carpets was horrible. I had to keep a dehumidifier on for six months and I’d have to empty it every night."

Such kindness

Mrs Wigmore, who has two grandchildren and five great grandchildren, received £2,000 from the British Red Cross National Floods Appeal.

She said: “I can’t tell you how much the money helped. I’ve been able to have the walls and windows done, buy a new hall carpet, paint for the doors and new tools for the shed. I can’t say thank you to the Red Cross enough; I’ve never experienced such kindness before.”

Read more stories of people helped through the National Floods Appeal

Find out how to prepare for floods and other disasters