Flood-hit Indian restaurant in Leeds to reopen

The Sheesh Mahal restaurant on Kirkstall Road, before the flooding.The Sheesh Mahal restaurant on Kirkstall Road, before the flooding.
The Sheesh Mahal restaurant on Kirkstall Road, before the flooding.

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A popular Indian restaurant which was torn apart by the Boxing Day floods could reopen in autumn.

The Sheesh Mahal in Kirkstall was forced to close after the devastating floods December destroyed the inside of the building.

Now owner Azram Chaudhry says the Kirkstall Road restaurant could reopen and start serving up sizzling curries to the public again by November.

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He said: “The floods were a wave of disaster and just washed us out, we had nothing left apart from four walls.

“We had to throw all of our equipment and start from scratch. I can’t wait to reopen it because my restaurant wasn’t just a restaurant, it was a second home to people, like a family.

“The support we have had has given me a real boost.”

Building work inside started on April 5.

Mr Chaudhry, 62, said the revamped restaurant will keep its original layout, which seated 80 people on the ground floor and 40 in a private function room upstairs.

A number of businesses on Kirkstall Road were battered by the floods on December 26 last year.

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Large parts of the area were plunged underwater after the River Aire burst its banks.

Mr Chaudhry said kind volunteers helped him, and other businesses in the area, to clean up the mess after the flooding.

He said: “People call them volunteers but I call them angels. They were so fantastic.

“We even had people coming from as far as Peterborough and Sheffield to give up their time on their days off because they had heard about what happened.”

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Mr Chaudhry said the restaurant could reopen in October or November if building work inside is complete on time.

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