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Firebug fury as bikes destroyed

PUBLISHED: 18:00 10 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:11 03 March 2010

TRADER Stephen Flynn today put a bounty on the firebug who wrecked his Christmas business.

Devastated Mr Flynn wept as he told of how £10,000 of uninsured festive stock had been destroyed after a container storing more than 100 bikes at his home was set alight.

TRADER Stephen Flynn today put a bounty on the firebug who wrecked his Christmas business.

Devastated Mr Flynn wept as he told of how £10,000 of uninsured festive stock had been destroyed after a container storing more than 100 bikes at his home was set alight.

The 40-year-old said he has been working seven days a week to build up his year-old bike business.

Now the distraught Felixstowe businessman has now offered a £1,000 reward to find the person who has left his livelihood a burnt-out wreck and has deprived children of their Christmas presents.

"I don't know why anybody would do this to me. It's not kids, not on a Monday night. I just can't believe it.

"They put my children at risk, how am I going to replace this?

"I started with nothing. I will borrow £1,000 to find out who did this to me because that is nothing compared to this."

Mr Flynn, of Coronation Drive, Felixstowe, was woken by neighbours last night telling him the container beside his home was on fire.

His family was evacuated from the house as firefighters tackled the blaze at 11.06pm and all that is left today is a pile of tangled handle bars and molten wheels in his back garden.

The two children Liam, 11, and Katrina, 17, were so terrified by the experience that they both slept in their parents' bedroom last night.

Mr Flynn had been storing Christmas orders, which he intended to sell at his Flynn Star Bicycles shop in Constable Road, Felixstowe but now he is having to retrieve what has not been damaged by the smoke and the fire.

Some of the bikes had been worth more than £400 but now Mr Flynn has no way of getting the money back.

"A lot of them were ordered early because you have to get them by a certain time."

Now Mr Flynn, 40, who has been working seven days a week and 11 hours a day to build his shop, will have a miserable Christmas as he will have to start building up his year-old business again.

However he was more concerned about his family's safety and the fatal consequences the blaze could have had.

He was told by firefighters that if neighbours had not warned them of the blaze, the fire could have crept in to their home while they were sleeping.

Police today confirmed they are treating the fire as arson.

Officers are appealing for a man who had been speaking to one of the neighbours before firefighters arrived to contact police.

If anyone has any information they should contact Felixstowe police on 01473 613500.

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