Neighbours tackle blaze

COMMUNITY-spirited neighbours helped to prevent a fire in the roof of a thatched cottage spreading.Five fire crews were called to the cottage in Crowcroft Road, Wattisham, near Stowmarket, at 5.

COMMUNITY-spirited neighbours helped to prevent a fire in the roof of a thatched cottage spreading.

Five fire crews were called to the cottage in Crowcroft Road, Wattisham, near Stowmarket, at 5.50pm yesterday after reports of a chimney fire that had spread to a thatched roof.

But when they had arrived they found the householders had already used a JCB digger and borrowed a hose pipe from neighbours in an attempt to deal with the flames. The digger is believed to belong to the landlord of the detached property.

Fire crews quickly had the incident under control but remained at the scene for more than two hours to strip down part of the thatch and ensure it was safe.

There was no major damage to the property and no-one was hurt in the incident, firefighters said. Crews from Stowmarket, Needham Market, Hadleigh and two from Ipswich were called to the fire.

Russell Punchard, station commander at Stowmarket, said it had been a "very successful" conclusion to the incident.

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Fire crews were also called to a blaze in Wetherup Street, near Stowmarket, at about 4pm. The fire started in an outbuilding of the property and a car and caravan were also damaged in the incident.

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