Fire vic­tims say thanks

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By ABBY BROWN

For 38 years Faye Timms wanted a front door, rather than a garage en­trance they had to use in their Mata­mata home.

So when the house burnt down last year that was top of her wish list.

It was 4.23am on Septem­ber 11 when fire­fight­ers ar­rived to find the Tawari St house she shares with hus­band Graham well ablaze.

The cou­ple were fast asleep when the fire took hold, only wak­ing be­cause of the sound of the alarm.

Graham Timms still gets emo­tional when talk­ing about the kind­ness and sup­port that fol­lowed that morn­ing.

Peo­ple from all over Mata­mata went out of their way to help, in­clud­ing the lo­cal test­ing sta­tion not charg­ing them for a WOF for their mo­torhome.

‘‘They didn’t have to do that but they just do it,’’ he said. ‘‘Oh it’s a won­der­ful town.’’

The cou­ple said they wanted to ex­press their thanks to ev­ery­one.

‘‘Peo­ple come up to you in the street and Faye said.

Their me­chanic came to the house two hours af­ter the fire, which had started in the garage and de­stroyed their car, with a car for them. A neigh­bour brought them cups of tea and let them use the shower on the morn­ing of the fire.

Fam­ily sup­port and skills were

give you a

cud­dle,’’ also cru­cial in build­ing the new home.

The cou­ple’s grand­son built the home and another grand­son did the plumb­ing.

Faye said the sup­port of the cou­ple’s daugh­ters, Leanne Wright and Denise Boyles, was so cru­cial.

In­stead of get­ting things of high mon­e­tary value out of the house af­ter the fire, Faye res­cued the things with more sen­ti­men­tal value like pho­to­graph al­bums.

While the al­bums were black­ened she man­aged to pre­serve the photos.

The new home – which they moved into last month – was the same size as the old one, as it was built on the old con­crete base but the garage is now a sin­gle in­stead of dou­ble.

There have been some ben­e­fits of hav­ing to re­build.

‘‘My wife has wanted a front door for 38 years and now she fi­nally has one,’’ Graham said.

In the old house they had to en­ter the house through the garage.

‘‘Ev­ery­one has said we are so lucky to be get­ting a house and new fur­ni­ture but at our age of 78 and 74 we re­ally didn’t need the stress of that,’’ he said.

Photo: ABBY BROWN

The Timms’ home is pro­filed in an advertising fea­ture in this week’s Chron­i­cle, which can be found on pages 11-13. Faye and Graham Timms at the front door Faye fi­nally got when they re­built their Tawari St house af­ter a fire last year.

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