Quick call stops fire spreading

AN ELDERLY couple today praised a man whose quick-thinking actions stopped a hedge fire spreading to their house.Alfred and Christine Brown were asleep in their home in Thorney Road, Capel St Mary at 3am on Sunday when they were awoken by a knock at their door.

AN ELDERLY couple today praised a man whose quick-thinking actions stopped a hedge fire spreading to their house.

Alfred and Christine Brown were asleep in their home in Thorney Road, Capel St Mary at 3am on Sunday when they were awoken by a knock at their door.

Jon Bunkell, 22, also of Thorney Road, told Mr Brown that his front hedge was on fire and that he had called the fire brigade.

Mr Bunkell said: "I had been working and came back at about 2.10am in my van. I dropped that off at my house and drove to Ipswich to drop a friend off.


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"Then I came back to Capel but, as I returned, I could see the flames and smoke and the bush was completely on fire.

"I went back to my house to get my mobile, rung the fire brigade and went back round to the fire.

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"The fire brigade turned up pretty swiftly, but while they were on their way, I knocked on the door of the house that the garden was in and the house next door.

"I just made sure they were awake and out of the house."

Mr Brown, 79, said: "The hedge was blazing like mad.

"I was asleep and we did not know anything about it. It was a sight to behold and we were a bit frightened and upset."

Mrs Brown, 79, added: "We did not hear or seen anything until we opened the door. If the hedge had been any nearer, I am sure it would have caught the house.

"We are very grateful to him (Mr Bunkell) that he went to so much trouble. It is unusual for someone of that age.

"The fire brigade were very quick and were here in ten minutes and it was out in about a quarter of an hour.

"We still have to count the cost. We will not know that until we get someone to look at it, but it is not going to be cheap to replace.

"The fire must have been deliberate, a hedge cannot catch light on its own.

"I am seething that someone could do something so stupid.

Mr Bunkell said: "I am relieved that they are alright. The place looked deserted and I cannot believe that no one else had rung the fire brigade."

A Suffolk Fire Service spokeswoman confirmed that the fire was being treated as suspicious.

If anyone has any information about the incident that happened between 2.10am and 2.45am on Sunday, contact Suffolk police on 01473 613500.

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