Tragedy ‘took away our heart and soul’

Macclesfield Express - - BOSLEY TRAGEDY - STU­ART GREER

THE son of Bosley mill vic­tim Dorothy Bai­ley says her death has ripped ‘the heart and soul’ from his fam­ily.

Speak­ing pub­licly for the first time since the dev­as­tat­ing ex­plo­sion al­most five weeks ago, Matt Bai­ley de­scribed the event as the ‘worst day of his life’ but said cher­ished mem­o­ries of his mum gave him strength.

How­ever, the 37-yearold has ac­cused bosses at the Bo­den Group, which owns Wood Treat­ment Lim­ited, of hav­ing no di­rect con­tact with him or his broth­ers Ed­ward and Christo­pher, who like Dorothy, worked at the mill.

Matt, who grew up in Bosley but now lives in Sandbach, de­scribed the mo­ment he heard about the ex­plo­sion.

He said: “Ed­ward called in shock. He said ‘Wood Treat­ment’s gone up. Mum’s in­side. I can’t find her. It’s an inferno. The build­ing is de­stroyed’.

“It took me three hours to get to the site. It was the worst day of my life. I had a gut feel­ing mum was dead and no one would come out alive.

“In that first week I slept a to­tal of six hours. Since then it has been a daily strug­gle that is hard to put into words.

“Some­one called me ‘the lucky one’ for not be­ing there like Ed­ward and Christo­pher were.

“But while I am lucky that I didn’t see the flames, the smell, the peo­ple on fire, I can’t share the grief and pain that they are go­ing through.

“Ed­ward has lost his mum, his job and his home.”

Matt was also an old school friend of Jason Shin­gler, who is miss­ing and pre­sumed dead.

He said: “Jason was like a big brother you wished you had. He was al­ways up for a laugh.

“His fam­ily are go­ing through hell and back ev­ery day, wait­ing for that phone to ring say­ing they have got Jason. Un­til then they haven’t got any clo­sure.”

Ear­lier this week Matt re­turned to the wrecked house which grand­mother of three Dorothy shared with Ed­ward, near the blast site.

He said: “Ev­ery­thing was as it was the way she left it that morn­ing, but the house felt dif­fer­ent.

“There was a cold energy, like the soul of the house was gone. That was my mum, she was the heart and soul of my fam­ily.

Matt has ap­pealed for bosses at Bo­den Group to meet the fam­i­lies of those killed or in­jured. He added: “Why haven’t the own­ers come down and met us? They haven’t made con­tact with any of us in al­most five weeks. Just come and talk to us.”

A spokesman for Wood Treat­ment Ltd said: “We have been in con­tact with all four fam­i­lies and have of­fered them our sup­port and deep­est sym­pa­thies at this ex­tremely dif­fi­cult time.”

‘It was the worst day of my life. I had a gut feel­ing mum was dead’

●● Matt Bai­ley and (inset) his mum Dorothy

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