Neighbour speaks about blaze drama which saw family of three rescued

An investigation has been launched into a Wigan borough house blaze which saw three rescued residents taken to hospital.

Monday, 22nd November 2021, 11:50 am

An elderly couple were among the casualties of the fire which ripped through a semi-detached home in Ashley Drive, Leigh, on Sunday night (November 21).

Six firefighters wearing breathing gear and armed with a hose reel went into the smoke-filled property to carry out the pensioners and lead their 40-year-old son to safety.

All three needed hospital treatment for smoke inhalation. None of their conditions is said to be life-threatening.

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Flames were pouring from the upper window when fire crews arrived

Fire crews from Hindley, Atherton and Leigh attended the emergency and while they have already ruled out foul play, the cause has yet to be determined.

What they do know is that the fire started in an upstairs front bedroom. Flames were already belching out of the windows when the first of four engines arrived.

Next door neighbour Ralph Macdonald said: "We were woken up at around 10.50pm. My wife Gwenn came running downstairs saying that next door was on fire.

"So we came out then and there were four fire engines and they were already spraying water through the upstairs bedroom window. One of the fireman came to us and asked us what our house was like and we told him them it was full of smoke so they told us we couldn't go back in.

The charred contents of the bedroom were taken outside

"The smoke had got in through the loft space. We have adapted some of our loft space and so there was quite a lot coming down. The fire brigade were great though and ventilated everything using a fan by the door.

"Even though it was a freezing cold night we had to sleep with the windows open which wasn't nice but I guess we've been lucky. I don't think there has been any structural damage."

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Neighbour Ralph Macdonald