We’ve been forced to leave our home

UNHAPPY: Adam Jones in his living room in front of where the fireplace once was.

UNHAPPY: Adam Jones in his living room in front of where the fireplace once was.

First published in Worcester News by

A FAMILY have been forced out of their home after fire struck next door.

Leanne Halling and her partner Adam Jones had been living in their semi-detached house in Ramsons Close, Malvern, until their neighbour’s home was gutted by a fire which started on the first floor on Thursday, February 23.

The fire caused smoke to invade their groundfloor, it is believed through the adjoining wall, killing their 10-week-old puppy Roxy as it slept in the kitchen.

The couple, who lived at the house with their children, eight-year-old Callum and three-year Charlie, have an immediate problem as they had not bought housing insurance – which Miss Halling admits was an oversight on her part. They are now left with a smoke-logged ground floor, damaged carpets and plaster work.

Both homes are owned by Festival Housing, which says it is still totting up the scale of the damage.

Festival has also offered alternative accommodation to the family, Miss Halling says when staff from Festival visited following the fire the couple were told the smoke had somehow got in through gaps in the wall.

She says the gaps in the wall are not supposed to be there and could have been caused by workmen em-ployed by Festival to remove a gas fire and replace it with an electric one.

Since the fire, maintenance workers have been to check the fireplace, removing the frontage from the wall. However, they did not put it back so the family were left to clean up and with a fireplace sitting in their living room.

The family are now staying with relatives, turning down the offer of rehoming from the housing association.

“The downstairs is a state,” said Miss Halling. “There’s black everywhere, and it smells of smoke.

“My problem is this wasn’t our fault, this is a fault with the brickwork and if there had not been any gaps in the fire wall we would not have had the smoke we had in here. But Festival says it is not liable.”

Miss Halling did praise firefighters who tried to resuscitate their puppy.

Steve Vizard, Festival’s mainentence chief, said the scale of the damage was still being assessed.

“We’ve been quick to react to the fire and have made sure the neighbours’ homes are safe to live in,” he said. “Investigations continue into the damage caused by the fire and we will make sure we keep all of the residents informed of progress.

“We regularly give our tenants advice on the need to have contents insurance as our insurance cover only extends to the building structure.”

Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service say the cause of the blaze next door was a faulty television.

Comments (9)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:32am Wed 29 Feb 12

MrStJohns says...

“they had not bought housing insurance”

no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.
“they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation. MrStJohns
  • Score: 0

9:55am Wed 29 Feb 12

MJI says...

However it is not their fault, and since it is rental housing only their belongings really need to be covered.
However it is not their fault, and since it is rental housing only their belongings really need to be covered. MJI
  • Score: 0

12:09pm Wed 29 Feb 12

GroovyChick says...

Their winging because of a little damage to their fire, think of the neighbours, its sad that their dog died but they should be grateful that the damage wasn't worse, or that someone didn't die.
Their winging because of a little damage to their fire, think of the neighbours, its sad that their dog died but they should be grateful that the damage wasn't worse, or that someone didn't die. GroovyChick
  • Score: 0

10:30am Fri 2 Mar 12

gemma6 says...

MrStJohns wrote:
“they had not bought housing insurance”

no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.
What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns.
[quote][p][bold]MrStJohns[/bold] wrote: “they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.[/p][/quote]What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns. gemma6
  • Score: 0

12:08pm Fri 2 Mar 12

CJH says...

gemma6 wrote:
MrStJohns wrote: “they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.
What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns.
Gemma please explain exactly why you think this is unpleasant and mean-spirited. They did not bother to get house contents insurance. They admitted that. Anyone who does not insure their property is taking a risk, and if goes wrong they only have themselves to blame. Logical, not unpleasant.
[quote][p][bold]gemma6[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]MrStJohns[/bold] wrote: “they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.[/p][/quote]What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns.[/p][/quote]Gemma please explain exactly why you think this is unpleasant and mean-spirited. They did not bother to get house contents insurance. They admitted that. Anyone who does not insure their property is taking a risk, and if goes wrong they only have themselves to blame. Logical, not unpleasant. CJH
  • Score: 0

12:30pm Fri 2 Mar 12

ushmush says...

Poor puppy!!!
Poor puppy!!! ushmush
  • Score: 0

5:03pm Fri 2 Mar 12

gemma6 says...

CJH wrote:
gemma6 wrote:
MrStJohns wrote: “they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.
What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns.
Gemma please explain exactly why you think this is unpleasant and mean-spirited. They did not bother to get house contents insurance. They admitted that. Anyone who does not insure their property is taking a risk, and if goes wrong they only have themselves to blame. Logical, not unpleasant.
It's like kicking someone when they're down. This family has enough to deal with without 'told you so' smug type comments. Furthermore, they did not admit they didn't bother to get insurance they said it was an oversight. Have you never forgotten something you should have done? I certainly have.
[quote][p][bold]CJH[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]gemma6[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]MrStJohns[/bold] wrote: “they had not bought housing insurance” no more needs to be said everyone else forks out for it, in case of just this sort of situation.[/p][/quote]What a thoroughly unpleasant and mean-spirited comment, MrStJohns.[/p][/quote]Gemma please explain exactly why you think this is unpleasant and mean-spirited. They did not bother to get house contents insurance. They admitted that. Anyone who does not insure their property is taking a risk, and if goes wrong they only have themselves to blame. Logical, not unpleasant.[/p][/quote]It's like kicking someone when they're down. This family has enough to deal with without 'told you so' smug type comments. Furthermore, they did not admit they didn't bother to get insurance they said it was an oversight. Have you never forgotten something you should have done? I certainly have. gemma6
  • Score: 0

5:17pm Fri 2 Mar 12

CJH says...

Oversight = not bothered to make sure they were insured. Insurance companies are very good at reminding you when you need to renew it - not really an excuse. Still, hopefully they will have learned their lesson now. Not having insurance, even if you are short of money, is a false economy. There have been many stories like this in the WN. When will people learn? If something happened to my house and I hadn't insured it I wouldn't go running to the press. It's called taking responsibilty.
Oversight = not bothered to make sure they were insured. Insurance companies are very good at reminding you when you need to renew it - not really an excuse. Still, hopefully they will have learned their lesson now. Not having insurance, even if you are short of money, is a false economy. There have been many stories like this in the WN. When will people learn? If something happened to my house and I hadn't insured it I wouldn't go running to the press. It's called taking responsibilty. CJH
  • Score: 0

5:27pm Fri 2 Mar 12

gemma6 says...

CJH wrote:
Oversight = not bothered to make sure they were insured. Insurance companies are very good at reminding you when you need to renew it - not really an excuse. Still, hopefully they will have learned their lesson now. Not having insurance, even if you are short of money, is a false economy. There have been many stories like this in the WN. When will people learn? If something happened to my house and I hadn't insured it I wouldn't go running to the press. It's called taking responsibilty.
'Oversight': a failure to notice:mistake:omiss
ion (Chambers English Dictionary)
The cup of human kindness is in no danger of overflowing in Wn comments is it? I despair.
[quote][p][bold]CJH[/bold] wrote: Oversight = not bothered to make sure they were insured. Insurance companies are very good at reminding you when you need to renew it - not really an excuse. Still, hopefully they will have learned their lesson now. Not having insurance, even if you are short of money, is a false economy. There have been many stories like this in the WN. When will people learn? If something happened to my house and I hadn't insured it I wouldn't go running to the press. It's called taking responsibilty.[/p][/quote]'Oversight': a failure to notice:mistake:omiss ion (Chambers English Dictionary) The cup of human kindness is in no danger of overflowing in Wn comments is it? I despair. gemma6
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree