One year on from the 2022 SEQ floods - Jokers Costume Mega Store, Rocklea

Around 35,000 costumes were destroyed when Jokers Costume Mega Store in Rocklea was inundated with 1.8 metres of floodwater following the Brisbane rain bomb of 2022.

Mark and Deanne Jackson-Knaggs had to toss out 35,000 destroyed costumes and rebuild their Jokers Costume Mega Store and warehouse in Rocklea when it was inundated with 1.8 metres of floodwater following the Brisbane rain bomb of February 2022.

Once the waters had receded, the SEQ small business owners were left with a $700,000 damage bill and the forced closure of their store for three months.

“The flood loss caused enormous financial grief,” Mark said. “Every wall had to be taken down to rebuild.”

In the wake of the disaster event, Mark and Deanne attended a Queensland Government small business talk at their local community recovery centre and reviewed online the government assistance available to impacted small business owners.

Through this they learned about the state and federally funded disaster recovery grants and loans available to them. It proved to be a business-saver.

“The Extraordinary Disaster Assistance Recovery Grant of $50,000 and the $140,000 Disaster Assistance Loan were a great help,” Mark said. “We wouldn’t have survived without them.”

Mark and Deanne put the financial assistance towards the cost of rebuilding their store and replacing damaged stock.

“I found the grant process relatively easy,” Mark said. “The hardest part was providing a monthly cash forecast as our work is very seasonal and varies from month to month.

“When we reopened, we came back very strong during our peak season around Halloween.

“We have a flood evacuation plan now. We didn’t know at what point we should start moving our stock out last time, so we did a trial run recently and can evacuate our entire store in 24 hours as well as move stock to the first floor to avoid future floods.

“Plus, we have a measure of when it hits a certain level in Oxley Creek to start evacuating stock, to help avoid a repeat of the damage.”

For more information on Queensland Government natural disaster assistance visit or call 1800 623 946.