Couple tell of nightmare after Bridgwater blaze forces them out of home (From This is The West Country)
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Couple tell of nightmare after Bridgwater blaze forces them out of home
A COUPLE have spoken of their nightmare after a devastating fire ripped through their home.
Pensioners Leslie and Vi Davies were forced from their house in Kidsbury Road, Bridgwater, on December 17 after a fire, thought to have been caused by a blow torch, left it uninhabitable.
Mr Davies, 75, told the Mercury: “I told my wife I was going to the post box to post Christmas cards.
“I started to leave the front room and on my way to the kitchen I realised the airing cupboard was in flames.”
Fire investigators believe the blaze was started by a blow torch while the owners of the property, Homes in Sedgemoor, say it began during plumbing work carried out by a contractor.
The ‘quick-thinking actions’ of the plumber working for Westcountry Plumbers and Builders, have been praised this week.
Mr Davies said that on discovering the fire he and the plumber both ran to the garden to retrieve a hose pipe before remembering the water had been disconnected.
He said this week: “My wife is still in a bit of shock. She said it was like a nightmare and it hasn’t quite sunk in.”
The couple said they were unable to sort out their insurance claim before Christmas, meaning they were forced to spend the holiday season staying with friends and family.
They are currently still there while a new home in the Bridgwater area is being prepared.
Mr Davies said: “The main things we lost were a new cooker and washing machine, and a fairly new three-piece suite.
“We’ve got nothing to move into the new property.”
A spokesman for Homes in Sedge-moor said: “This incident was distressing for the tenant and we’re working with them to conclude the fire investigation.
“The fire began during works carried out by a private contractor.
“The tenants have since been offered permanent housing in a new property and we’re pleased they have accepted this offer, together with financial assistance, to help replace some essential items of furniture.
“We’d also like to praise the quick-thinking actions of the contractor who called the fire brigade rather than trying to tackle the blaze, and evacuated the disabled tenant.”
In a statement, Dave Wheldal, manager of Westcountry Plumbers and Builders, said: “As a small family-run business we’re devastated by the fire at Kidsbury Road.
“We believe our installers acted in the best interest of the tenants and put their safety ahead of their own.
“We’re dealing with the family involved to resolve this as soon as possible.”