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Fire engulfs family home in Shotley

PUBLISHED: 10:20 13 November 2001 | UPDATED: 10:50 03 March 2010

A SHOTLEY family are recovering today after their garage was engulfed in a fire.

Quick thinking passers-by alerted Margo Gorringe and her sons to smoke pouring out of the building while the family were having their tea last night.

A SHOTLEY family are recovering today after their garage was engulfed in a fire.

Quick thinking passers-by alerted Margo Gorringe and her sons to smoke pouring out of the building while the family were having their tea last night.

It is thought that the blaze was started after a spark from a freezer ignited vapours from a motorbike.

Ms Gorringe's 16-year-old son Paul Jones had taken apart his Aprilla 50 motorbike for repairs but had gone in for his meal at their home in Kirkton Close and closed the door causing fumes to build up.

Her youngest son 11-year old Christopher called the fire brigade while her boyfriend Colin Palding dragged his Yamaha 600cc motorbike free of the flames, miraculously avoiding injury other than burned hands.

Today a shocked Ms Gorringe said: "My eldest son was in a right state.

"He had shut down the garage door because I always tell them never to leave it open while the motorbikes are in there."

Onlookers gathered to watch the blaze as fire fighters from Ipswich and Holbrook fought the flames.

Neighbours also grabbed hoses to keep cool a huge oil tank cool that is kept next to the garage.

The oil is piped to the house to provide fuel.

Ms Gorringe said: "We have lost so much stuff – the freezer, golf clubs and boxes that we had already packed up because we are trying to sell the house."

Although no one had been hurt in the fire, Ms Gorringe was suffering with bruises where she had jumped over her neighbour's fence in her panic to get away from the fire.

Thankfully the brick garage is detached from the house and the fire was contained so it did not spread.

Ms Gorringe said: "If it had been one of the newer houses we would not have stood a chance.

"We are just lucky that we know so many people around here and they were able to help us."

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