Fire victims say thanks
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.
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.