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Good time to stop for pint

PUBLISHED: 20:13 10 April 2004 | UPDATED: 04:46 02 March 2010

AN ANCIENT cottage dating back 500 years was saved from being burnt to the ground when a pub-goer spotted the fire.

A villager from Whatfield, near Hadleigh, saw the blaze in the roof of the cottage and fire crews were quickly alerted to stop it from spreading yesterday.

AN ANCIENT cottage dating back 500 years was saved from being burnt to the ground when a pub-goer spotted the fire.

A villager from Whatfield, near Hadleigh, saw the blaze in the roof of the cottage and fire crews were quickly alerted to stop it from spreading yesterday.

The fire started at the property in Whatfield Road, Naughton, and was seen by a drinker in the Wheelhouse pub next door.

Angela Allen, cottage owner, praised both the drinker and the fire crews who attended the blaze at 2.30pm.

Ms Allen said: ''I was not in the property at the time - I was only gone about half an hour. The firemen have done an excellent job, they have done very well indeed."

She has lived in the cottage which is believed to be about 500 years old, for eight years.

Fire crews from Needham Market and Hadleigh teamed up with two crews from the Princes Street station in Ipswich to tackle the blaze. They say the fire is believed to have started from the stove flue.

Paul Seager, assistant divisional officer, said: ''It looks like the fire has come from the solid fuel wood-burning stove. It appears there was a break down in the flue and hot smoke and gases have come up and ignited the thatch.

''There was nobody in the house at the time and luckily somebody in the pub noticed it. They called us and we were able to arrive before the roof was fully alight. We have taken off about 15 to 20 per cent of the roof to get back to clean straw.''


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