Vodka explosion left Boston businesses thousands of pounds

BOSTON businessmen at the Broadfield Lane Industrial Estate are facing rebuilding their companies after returning to work following the explosion which claimed five lives.

Staff were only allowed back to work at the end of last week, 10 days after the blast at the illegal vodka distillery, as police continued their investigations.

The incident on July 13 also left another man in hospital.

Company owners on the site say they have lost thousands of pounds due to the closure, and they are still losing money as people are still avoiding the site.

John Rose, manager of Boston Valet, said: “We came back on the site on Thursday.

“It took a week for them to clear the site and do what they were going to have to do. It has very much had an effect on the business.

“We’ve had no-one down here. Now it’s just letting people know we’re back.

“It’s been very tough on everyone.“

George West, who runs Lincolnshire Recycling Limited, said: “The road is normally full of cars, but there’s just no-one coming down. We’ve all lost business. We’ve lost about four or five grand from a loss of customers.”

He added that he thought people might now be avoiding the area as they thought it was ‘dodgy’, after police discovered an illegal still at the site.

However, Mr West and other business owners in the area say they knew nothing about the illicit activity taking place just feet away from their own units.

Mick Cooper, who runs Mick’s Motors, said: “We thought it was just a warehouse. There was no-one going in or coming out.”

Mr West added: “If they were doing anything there, they were doing it at night.

“We’re here from 6.30am until 6pm at night and we never saw anything.”

Mr Cooper was left with several cars in his unit when the explosion took place.

He also had to cancel jobs for the rest of the week and the next week.

He added: “We’re legitimate businesses and when we can’t work for a week it affects resources, not everybody can cope with that.

“Those men paid the ultimate price for what they did.”

All the businesses said they thought they had been poorly informed by police about when they could return to work following the incident.

Richard Dilley, of Boston Motorcool, which had only been operating from the unit nine on the site for seven weeks, said: “All the units five, six, seven, nine and 11 and the scrapyard down the bottom, have been back and forth because every day they told us it was going to be open.”