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Third Place Winner, December 2011 Photo Contest
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From the Carlisle official website http://www.carlisleunited.premiumtv.co.uk/page/News/NewsDetail/0,,10361~611494,00.html

The pitch was under six feet of water but it's now a mere two feet. Elsewhere..
Members of staff were allowed in to Brunton Park for the first time since the floods started today and the sight that greeted them was not a pleasant one at all.

Business Operations Manager George Thomson told us, "if you can imagine a worst case scenario, then this is it. It really is awful but we will be doing everything in our power to clean this mess up quickly and get things running again."

Amongst the worst areas to be hit was the Blues Store which lost as much as, if not more than, 90% of its stock. George said, "we had just been talking about the increased turn over from the shop and discussing how well it was all going, with new lines coming in all the time, and this event has all but wiped that out. It was particularly hard to walk in to the Store and see the amount of damage that has been caused. However, we'll do what we can and we'll be working to ensure that the shop can open for business as usual once we've got this current mess cleaned up."

The Club gymnasium has also been very badly hit with a lot of the new equipment, kindly supplied by The Official Supporters Club, damaged beyond repair. The facility was becoming the envy of many Clubs and there is no doubt that this incident is something of a set back. Club physio Dolly was in briefly to survey the scene and was clearly gutted at what lay before him.

Further bad news was in store when the door to the newly refurbished Neil Centre was opened to reveal that the £30,000 revamp was covered in a thick layer of what we will describe as mud. United have already been in touch with the experts who laid the surface to see what can be done, if anything, to put things right.

Despite all this the priority at the moment has to be to ensure that all of the financial and contractual papers are salvaged. Whilst most, if not all, of the computer equipment is ruined we are, fortunately, in the position where we had a proactive data saving policy at the Club and we expect that approximately 99% of the data will be safe.

As far as the pitch goes, the pictures we posted earlier describe things better than any words ever could. We can now only wait to see if it is only the top surface that has been damaged or whether the problems will go much deeper.

Whilst we know that our superb fans will be eager to help us clean up this mess there is really nothing we can do at this moment in time. We will, however, ask for help as soon as the need arises.

We are looking for an alternative venue for the Redditch match this coming weekend and feel very confident that we will be able to announce something soon. We will keep you posted and up to date on that one as soon as it is all finalised. We are also talking to Stevenage about postponing the Nationwide Conference game with them next Tuesday and we would look to play that at some stage in February.

We caught up with manager Paul Simpson tonight and he said, "we now need to look for alternative training facilities. Unfortunately the Rochdale Reserve game was cancelled today or else the first team would have played in that. It's the same on Wednesday with our home Reserve game having to be called off, it means that I can't get the players involved in that."

He went on to say, "I was advised to stay away from the Club today, so I did, and I will keep the players away tomorrow while I go down and see exactly how bad things are. There are quite a few of us who lost our cars in it all and Brian Shelley and Will McDonagh got back to find their houses flooded, so it's been a bad weekend for us. Myself, Craig Farrell, Peter Murphy and I think about 6 others had to leave our cars so I'm not expecting to find it in too good a state."

Cleaning the debris and muck from his own garden he added, "it'll take some work to get it all back to normal but we'll have to do what we can as quickly as possible. It is a huge blow for us but we'll just have to get on with it, there's nothing else we can do

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Good job Burton have already played there :)
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