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Home   Faversham   News   Article

Mum Jacqui Brennan's ordeal as neighbour's house goes up in flames in Beaumont Terrace, Faversham while children sleep

10 May 2014
by Lowri Stafford

A mum has described waking to find smoke seeping into her Faversham home as her teenage daughter and toddler nephew slept in the next room.

As flames engulfed her neighbour’s house in Beaumont Terrace, Jacqui Brennan’s first thought was to get 14-year-old Lauren and two-year-old Harry to safety before the fire spread to her house.

The 36-year-old shouted for Lauren, who took the tot and fled to her mum's parked car while she dialled 999.

Lauren Partis, 14, with her mum Jacqui Brennan

Lauren Partis, 14, with her mum Jacqui Brennan

Luckily the blaze did not spread, but it is thought to have severely damaged the ground floor of her neighbour's house.

It is believed to have been caused by candles that were left unattended in a conservatory.

Jacqui said: "Something woke me up before the smoke alarm went off. I opened the bedroom door and immediately smelt smoke.

"I shouted for Lauren and then ran outside to hear cracking and popping coming from next door.

Jacqui and her daughter Lauren were forced to flee their house after fire

Jacqui and her daughter Lauren were forced to flee their house after fire

"I was babysitting my nephew at the time, who was asleep on the top floor. I got him out and called an ambulance just in case he’d inhaled smoke. Luckily he was perfectly fine.

"I dread to think what could have happened if the smoke alarm hadn't gone off."

Lauren, who goes to the Abbey School, added: "I was scared. I was thinking our house would go up in flames and worried we'd have to move."

Crews were called to the street near Faversham railway station at about 12.15am, and firefighters wearing breathing equipment used hose reel jets to douse the flames.

The roof of the neighbour's conservatory, where the fire started

The roof of the neighbour's conservatory, where the fire started

They then fitted smoke alarms in both houses before leaving the scene just before 1am.

The family were given oxygen by paramedics, but were uninjured apart from sore throats from breathing in smoke.

It was the second fire to hit the same house in six months. The first happened just before Christmas last year, and is thought to have been caused by an electric heater.

Watch manager Ian West said: "A crew wearing breathing apparatus went into the property and extinguished the fire. We then searched the building to make sure everyone was out.

"The ground floor was damaged by fire and smoke-logged, but the flames did not spread to other buildings. We replaced a smoke alarm in one property and fitted an extra one next door."

Police were also called, but a spokesman confirmed the blaze was not suspicious and they were not investigating.

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