Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

Video: Elderly couple and another man forced to flee homes as thatch fire engulfs properties in Norwich Road, Barham

18:42 14 April 2014

The blaze that engulfed thatched cottages in Barham, which has led to the nearby Norwich Road being closed for several days.

The blaze that engulfed thatched cottages in Barham, which has led to the nearby Norwich Road being closed for several days.

An elderly couple and one other man were forced to flee their homes yesterday afternoon after what began as a thatch fire engulfed two properties.

Suffolk Fire and Rescue were called to the scene of a pair of semi-detached houses on the Norwich Road in Barham yesterday after reports of a thatch fire.

Smoke from the fire was visible to motorists travelling on the A14.

Group Commander Dave Pedersen said that upon arrival the crews immediately realised it was an “intense fire” and called for back-up; a total of eight fire engines and an aerial ladder platform were involved in quelling the flames.

The damage caused by the blaze is “very extensive”, said Mr Pedersen, and involved the roof and both floors of both properties, resulting in two dormer windows collapsing in to the first floor. The thatched roof is being stripped away.

Last night a neighbour of the property owners said they were “devastated” by what had happened and the Salvation Army have attended the scene to help.

Fire crews have tried to salvage as much of the properties and the owners’ possessions as possible.

Mr Pedersen said: “It’s a pair of semis and the fire spread from the roof, which is a combined roof, down on to the first floor of both properties.

“We will undertake a full investigation when we’re able to. We’ll be interviewing the occupiers and we’ll also be looking to carry out our own investigation into what the cause was.”

Although there were no injuries, an ambulance was called as a precaution to administer a health check on the elderly couple due to the level of smoke.

The properties sit in an idyllic country setting and neighbours in the village of Barham who were out walking their dogs said they had only realised what happened when a police officer stopped them due to the road closure.

One neighbour who lives directly adjacent to the properties said workers at a nearby sawmill had spotted the flames on the thatch roof.

David Westgate said the elderly couple who had lived in one of the properties for roughly 15 years were “devastated”.

“I was indoors and I thought I could smell smoke and the fire crews weren’t here then,” he said.

“They’re lovely people, all of them. I think the husband is about 81, and I think his wife is about 77, so you don’t need that at this time of life.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Crowds enjoyed the sunshine at Ipswich Music Day 2015 in Christchurch Park.
Stetsons are Cool got the crowd dancing.

From live music and open air cinemas to art, sport and stunt displays, Ipswich has a packed programme of family fun lined up this summer.

Aldeburgh beach

Global superstar Taylor Swift has been spotted strolling the streets of a Suffolk seaside town, after she flew into the country to meet her rumoured new love interest’s mother.

Town pastors gather for their 10-year celebration conference at Adastral Park, Martlesham Heath

Town pastors from across Suffolk gathered together to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the project.

Sydney Harbour Bridge, Australia

Ipswich isn’t blessed with beautiful bridges; civil engineers don’t come to town to marvel at the engineering prowess of Telford, Brunel or Stephenson, writes John Norman, of The Ipswich Society.

Ipswich Choral Society

An evening of music and poetry will celebrate a love of all things Shakespeare by the Ipswich Choral Society in Blakenham Woodland Garden next week.

Pigs Gone Wild Project Manager Norman Lloyd and Head of Property for the East of England Cooperative Stuart McDonald try to round up the pigs escaping the warehouse.

If you go down to Ipswich tomorrow, you are sure of a big surprise.

The White Hart pub in High Street, Saxmundham.

A public meeting has been called in Saxmundham to try to put together a £450,000-plus community bid to buy a closed down town centre pub.

Pc Andy Masterson checks motorists speeds on the A140 at Stonham Parva.

Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner has said he is ‘sick of arrogant drivers’ after the number of motorists clocked travelling at 100mph-plus trebled in a year.

A hedgehog

Look sharp, because Suffolk Wildlife Trust are head-hunting for a Hedgehog Officer.

Rushmere Hall Primary School had a red, white and blue party in the sunshine.

Revellers young and old across Ipswich have been continuing the Queen’s 90th celebrations long after her official birthday.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24