[T]oday, John Stevenson, MP for Carlisle, unveiled a ‘Wall of Pride’ at pladis’s McVitie’s factory in Carlisle to mark the first anniversary of the 2015 floods. The ceremony was attended by many of the employees who helped get the factory back in production. The Wall of Pride names all 728 employees who were involved in the emergency response to the flood in December last year.
The McVitie’s factory on Church Street, Caldewgate, was flooded by water over one metre high when more than a month’s worth of rain fell in just 24 hours. The resulting damage to electrical equipment and ovens led to the temporary closure of the factory and affected production of some of the nation’s favourite treats, such as McVitie’s Ginger Nuts and Carr’s Table Water biscuits, earning widespread attention.
Nearly 40 million litres of water and 540 tonnes of debris had to be cleaned up, with full production only resuming in April this year.
John Stevenson, MP for Carlisle, said: “Today, I have met with many individuals who worked tirelessly to get production up and running in Church Street, to end the ‘biscuit drought’ of well-loved brands. Over 20 per cent of Carlisle’s economy is manufacturing, compared to 10 per cent nationally, underlining how this factory plays a central role in our local economy and community. The Wall of Pride is a way of honouring the people who helped put biscuits, which are loved by so many people right across the UK, back on shelves.”
Mike Heaney, factory general manager, said: “Mr Stevenson was warmly welcomed to our factory today, and it has been a pleasure to introduce him to some of those named on our Wall of Pride. I am thankful to our team who helped restore the factory so we can continue to produce 80,000 tonnes of biscuits each year. Our factory is part of the fabric of the local community and we appreciate all the support shown by the people of Carlisle.”