Saturday, 8 November 2008

Letter to all well wishers

Dear Everyone,

As the owners of Otterton Mill we would like to express how touched and encouraged we are by the many expressions of support we have received from customers, suppliers, staff, volunteers and neighbour since the devastating flood of last week. We have been inundated with offers of help with the clean-up operation and we only wish we could take them all up. Due to the extensive nature of the flooding, most of the clean-up has to be conducted by a professional organisation, and that process has already started. Many people offering support have also enquired about our insurance and whether we are covered for flooding. At the time of writing we believe much of the cost associated with the clean-up and loss of business will indeed be covered, although we will loose some valuable preparation time for the important Christmas trade.

Since taking over the mill last spring we have faced a very challenging trading environment with the credit crunch, poor summer weather and lower than normal tourist volumes. This latest incident initially felt like another major set-back. However, the support we've received has been a massive boost and we are now looking for ways to turn this disaster into an opportunity. For example, we've decided to launch a charity called Friends of Otterton Mill as soon as possible. This charity will hold funds to support the ongoing restoration of the historic mill workings. With the support of so many regular customers, we hope a Friends of Otterton Mill fund will help us keep the mill and regular milling demonstrations available to the public at no fee.

We would especially like to thank the customer who posted a letter of support on the fence near the Mill entrance and we would like to assure that customer, and all others, that we are indeed looking to resume normal business as soon as possible .

With many thanks to all well wishers,

Caroline and Simon Spiller
Otterton Mill Ltd

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