Flooding leaves family homeless

By Mal Butler Nov 3, 2023
Cody-Rae, Theadore and Louisa who are now homeless

A heartbroken couple and their three young children have been left homeless after their rented property in Gunville was flooded by last week’s storm.

Homes and businesses across the Island were affected by the rising water levels, with the IW Observer highlighting the plight of one badly affected family among many, Connor Gregory, 30, and his wife, Zara. The couple have three children – Cody-Rae, seven, Louisa, five, and Theodore James, one, and are currently crammed in with Connor’s in-laws in Binstead.

Connor said: “We’re stressed to the high heaven and totally exhausted. I feel like a bad parent because I can’t provide a comfortable home for my children. We are absolutely devastated.

“The water came flooding into our garden after a stream at the back burst its banks and just came through the back of the house.

“A lot of new houses have been built on fields at the back of our house, and water is no longer soaked up; it just flows over the concrete. There was about three feet of water in the garden and one-and-a-half feet in the house. You can do so much in this world, and then it’s taken away.

“It’s also put us under such a financial strain and there is a massive financial impact, three-bedroom houses are difficult to find on the Island. The house is unliveable, and we spent hours cleaning it up. Then we learned our landlords have given us notice, saying they want to sell the property which only added to the strain.

“There will be no Christmas for my kids.”

Landlord Chris Markham said: “We are sincerely sorry for the impact the floods have had on Connor and his family. We always prioritise our tenants’ interests, including responding to requests positively, investing in the building and offering below-market fees.

“We have been advised the property is currently not habitable and we are thankful that Connor’s families have been able to offer a temporary housing solution. Neighbouring properties have flooded a second time and there is a risk of further flooding. It is important that we do not place the family at any risk.

“We have communicated that, with much regret, we will no longer continue with the let after early January 2024, something we have been discussing with Connor for several months.

“We always do our best and have acted responsibly and with safety as a priority.“

A GoFundme page has been set-up by Connor’s friends to help him and his family which can be found at iow.life/connorgregory.