Two fam­i­lies home­less as house goes up in flames

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Front Page - By Sa­man­tha Wil­liams

saw­illiams@thek­m­ two dogs, were forced to flee from the burn­ing build­ing af­ter the house in Brench­ley Close caught alight.

Mrs Hor­ton’s son, Thomas, 18, and her hus­band Mark were out when the fire broke out at around 5.15pm.

The two-storey, semi-de­tached, end of ter­race house was com­pletely gutted by the blaze.

The neigh­bour­ing house also suf­fered wa­ter and smoke dam­age, al­though no one is be­lieved to have been in at the time.

Around 40 fire­fight­ers, some wear­ing breath­ing ap­pa­ra­tus, tack­led the blaze.

At its height, six fire en­gines, a height ve­hi­cle and a bulk wa­ter car­rier were all in­volved in putting out the flames.

Neigh­bour Shan­non Pow­ell­was at home in nearby Kil­ndown Close when the fire broke out.

She said: “At first the flames were com­ing out of the roof, and then out of the win­dows.

“The roof col­lapsed, and then it looked like the first floor col­lapsed.

“There were loads of fire en­gines – the whole street was filled with them. We were wor­ried the house was go­ing to ex­plode.”

At 7.20pm, the fire­fight­ing pres­ence had been re­duced to three fire en­gines.

Nei­ther fam­ily were able to re­turn to their houses on Mon­day night due to the ex­ten­sive dam­age. Both are now be­lieved to be ei­ther stay­ing with fam­ily or in a ho­tel.

Po­lice have now launched an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the cir­cum­stances sur­round­ing the fire.

Foren­sic ex­perts ex­am­ined the scene on Tues­day morn­ing but the cause is be­ing treated as un­ex­plained.

A spokesman for Kent Po­lice said: “We are in­ves­ti­gat­ing the cir­cum­stances around a house fire at Brench­ley Close in Ash­ford.

“Po­lice were called at 17.35pm on Mon­day to a semi-de­tached house. One of the oc­cu­pants was in­side at the time but she es­caped un­hurt.

“Foren­sic ex­perts ex­am­ined the re­mains of the house on Tues­day morn­ing.”

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