SEA Cadets have been left devastated after their headquarters were hit by floods.
For the past year, the South Shields Sea Cadets have been revamping their base in Wapping Street, with new carpets and new equipment.
However, Thursday’s storm has left volunteers devastated after a tidal surge caused the Tyne to burst its banks, sending a cascade of water crashing through the building.
Angela Robson, treasurer of the parents’ committee association at the Cadets, said: “We had been told of the flood alert, so a few of us went down to see what we could do to protect the building – but when we got down, it was too late.
“We opened the door to find two feet of water flooding through the building, destroying everything.
“The clean-up has been painstaking as we have had to be so careful, as no doubt there has been sewage in the river water.
“There are also boats outside and the smell of diesel was horrendous. We had to close on Friday night to the Cadets as it was just unsafe for them to come in. Everything is going to have to be disinfected before people can come back.”
As well as flood water destroying new carpets, uniforms and musical instruments have also been left ruined.
Plaster boards that were going to be used on walls have also been damaged by the flood water.
Yesterday, volunteers were at the base in a desperate bid to clean it in the hope it will be able to reopen on Monday.
As well as carpets, computer desks and maps were also destroyed by the water.
The Sea Cadets are now asking anyone who can help them replace what has been damaged to contact them.
Ms Robson said: “The Sea Cadets are a charity and we rely heavily on funding – so this is going to have a huge impact. As yet, we don’t know how much the damage is going to cost us or how much damage has been caused.”
Anyone who can help, is asked to contact the Sea Cadets on 456 0345.