Film director rescued by farmers and pub owners in the Yorkshire Dales after getting trapped in Storm Ciara floods

Damage caused by Storm Ciara near Hawes in the Dales
Damage caused by Storm Ciara near Hawes in the Dales
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An award-winning film director and producer has thanked members of a Dales community who came to her aid after her car became stranded in floodwater.

Isabelle Stead was travelling from Leeds to visit her mother when she became caught up in Storm Ciara on Sunday.

She was passing the Cover Bridge Inn in East Witton, near Leyburn, when her car became trapped in rising waters.

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The director, whose film Son of Babylon has been shown at the Sundance Film Festival, was rescued by locals and took shelter in the pub.

She shared her story on the Yorkshire Dales National Park's official blog.

“I had a nerve-wracking experience when I got stuck in the flash floods on Sunday - yet I met some fantastic, selfless people when the locals of East Witton came to my aid.

“I was driving from Leeds to Carlton to visit my mum, but, just as I passed the Cover Bridge Inn, I underestimated a flooded area and my car broke down in the middle.

“The river had burst, and water was coming down through the fields. It happened so quickly as the water rose to 1.25 metres. I had no phone reception and no waterproofs, so had to evacuate with the water already halfway up the door.

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“I waded through the flood waters towards a young man called Jamie who said he was from the Inn and would ask the farmer to help. I gave him my car key and went into the pub where his mum - the landlady Anne - gave me dry clothes and a cup of tea.

“In the pub was another man from Thirsk who had also got stuck before me. The landlord Nick was great - he kept putting logs on the fire to dry us out. Beth, their daughter, loaned me her wellies.

“Sam, a local lad with a tractor, pulled my car out, with Jamie guiding. They were all absolutely brilliant.

“I called my mum to let her know I could no longer visit. Nevertheless, mum and her next-door neighbour Pete (a Cover Bridge Inn regular) braved the weather and came from Carlton to my aid, too. Pete fixed the car and guided me back to the A1 on less flooded roads.

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“I cannot believe the kindness that strangers showed me and am so thankful that I broke down in that spot. I will be forever grateful to everyone that helped me that day, and I’m so sorry for any inconvenience I caused them. Their selfless act will have a lasting impact on me, and I can’t wait to revisit the Inn.

“Overall it turned into a beautiful experience”.