April 18 2014 Latest news:
Monday, December 16, 2013
A west Norfolk woman has described how she was rescued from the barge she called home, along with her beloved pets, during last week’s tidal surge.
Carol Ann Bowes, 67, was on the barge on the River Nar at Boal Quay when water began to pour into the vessel.
“The trouble was they had told everybody else about the tide but not me,” she said. “At 8 o’clock water started coming in through the cat flap.
“I looked outside and the gang plank had turned over so I couldn’t get off.
“I wouldn’t say I wasn’t scared, I was, I’m only human.”
Mrs Bowes called a friend who was able to alert nearby fire crews to her location.
The team set out with some wading through the water until a boat could be brought to transport Mrs Bowes and her cat, Oush, 17, to safety before the team returned for Greta, a six-year-old German Shepherd.
“The water was up to my waist,” said Mrs Bowes, who had lived on the 130ft barge for 20 years.
“My dog was sitting on the sofa and my 17-year-old cat was swimming around.
“I lost my voice shouting. I rang a friend and he didn’t believe me at first but he did come down.
“It was quite frightening, especially when you are on your own.”
Mrs Bowes also praised the fire service crew who rescued her and the support she had been given since.
She said: “The fire crew were brilliant, especially with the animals.
“They put the cat in with me and they went straight back for the dog.
“Luckily it didn’t happen a few years ago as I had another two German Shepherds so I don’t know what they would have done.”
After being taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital at King’s Lynn to be checked out for hypothermia Mrs Bowes has been staying at the King’s Lynn Residential Home, in Austin Fields, while she looks for a new home.