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Community rallies to revive battered Ferns Hideaway

WHO NEEDS insurance when you have the ongoing support of an entire community?

Not Ferns Hideaway Resort.

Faced with an insurance excess of $50,000 following the destruction caused by Cyclone Marcia in Byfield, Ferns Hideaway was losing hope of ever re-opening before their loyal customer base and the wider community rallied around them in their time of need.

Owners John "Marto" Martin and Genevieve Martin said they were eternally grateful for the help and support.

"We've had a tough run. There is about $30,000 to $38,000 worth of damage," Marto said.

"We didn't have power for 11 days; we had no water or phone service.

"The devastation is just unbelievable; we've been so focused on cleaning up. We've had so much help from the community; so many people have come to help us."

Marto said so far, a total of 1280 man hours had been spent cleaning and repairing the resort.

"On one day we had 17 people turn up who had had weddings or other events here.

"There were seven chainsaws, a bobcat and an excavator. They didn't ask, they just turned up and said 'We're here for a few days, what can we do?'

"It has just been amazing. We'd love everyone to know how much we appreciate their help because we wouldn't have a hope without them."

With all cabins and the restaurant back in action, Marto said the resort would be up and running this Friday.

Coincidentally, Friday falls on the 13th, the same date the resort opened 25 years ago.

"We opened on Friday the 13th 25 years ago so we thought we may as well try again this Friday the 13th and open for lunch," he said.

"We will open for lunch and dinner on Saturday and there will be live music."



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