Farmers count cost of livestock lost in Angus and Mearns floods

Dead sheep have been found on St Cyrus Beach
Dead sheep have been found on St Cyrus Beach

A large number of dead sheep have washed up on St Cyrus Beach after days of heavy rain fall and flooding in the wake of Storm Frank.

Farmers and landowners tried to rescue their livestock as water levels rose rapidly. Several of them have lost animals as a result of the floods.

Shepherd Tom Barclay, who keeps sheep across St Cyrus, has lost a number of livestock. He said: “I had 240 head of sheep down at the North Esk, I’ve lost a lot but I’ll have to wait until the water is down to see how many. It’s not looking good.”

Steptoe’s Yard, which is situated beside the North Esk, saw its whole yard inundated and owner Peter Harrison has lost a large number of chickens. He said: “This is the worst it has ever been. We were an island. We had to use a boat to rescue our hens - 27 drowned but we saved 40.”

Donna Wilson had to rescue four of her horses from flooded fields in Craigo. She was helped by police and locals. They were out of their depth and in danger of escaping when fencing was swept away.

She said: “We moved them at the right time. They are very upset but it could have been much worse.”

The bad weather is not over with more rain forecast for this week. The water has risen again at St Cyrus and SEPA has issued more flood warnings for Logie Mill, Craigo, Bridge of Dun, Finavon, Tannadice and Brechin.

Water levels of the River South Esk have been rising at the Bridge of Dun with the area under and surrounding the ancient bridge saturated.

Marykirk was left under water last Wednesday as the River North Esk burst its banks when Storm Frank hit.

Farms and streets were inundated with flood water and nine properties were evacuated in Marykirk itself.

Four residents were also evacuated from Logie Mill.

Craigo was also affected by deep water and outbuildings were submerged, in particular huge secure storage units containing caravans, vehicles, vintage cars and motorbikes.

Rachael Chrisp, whose partner was still inside the building as the water was rising, said: “My whole life’s shattered. It’s our business we have lost. All our specialist business equipment is in there.”

She feared her partner Mark Whitworth would only get out if he swam out.

Travellers at the North Esk Park in St Cyrus have reported their site has not been flooded.

William Docherty, site owner, said: “On advice from the Coastguard the touring caravans were evacuated but the rest of us sat it out. We kept re-routing the flood water with our diggers. The whole yard stayed bone dry.

“We had soup and bread ready for the emergency services and Coastguard.”