Small stores owners across parts of England caught up in the floods battled against the odds to keep their stores open this week.

John Cox, managing director of Rusts, said he worked alone through the night to clear up one of the company's 12 stores, in Covingham Square, Swindon, after it was flooded. The shop opened the next morning, only losing half a day's trade.

Fellow Top 50 retailer Mills Group's store in Filey, North Yorkshire, was also ankle-deep in water after a flash flood hit the town.

The local area was closed off for 12 to 15 hours, though the store was able to open again the next day after a quick clean-up operation.

Staff at Musgrave Budgens Londis also went into overdrive to ensure its new flagship Budgens store in Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire, opened on Thursday as scheduled.

The store is acting as a pilot for the chain's new look. Although flood waters earlier in the week had reached the car park, and contractors had been unable to get to the store during the weekend, workers battled throughout the week to make sure it would open as planned.

Meanwhile, six people became stranded in a Londis store in Buckingham and had to be led to safety by rescue teams in the town.

Staff at another Londis store, in Buckingham, rallied round to help flood victims, acting as a collection point for residents to pick up sandbags to protect their properties from the floods.