VIDEO: Neighbour suffers fits in ‘arson’ drama

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A FIRE which raged in a first floor flat left neighbours shaken and one suffering fits.

One resident told of suffering a series of epileptic fits after a fire started in the flat above her own on Clifford Road, Blackpool.

Fire engine

Fire engine

It is believed the fire may have been started deliberately.

A woman was today being quizzed by police on suspicion of arson.

The drama unfolded at 6pm on Tuesday.

Catherine Peachey, 36, was at home with her fiancé when neighbours banged at her door asking for the fire brigade to be called.

The fire in a bedroom filled the upstairs of the house with smoke causing all residents to evacuate.

She said: “I could hear lots of banging around upstairs, then one of the neighbours came down in hysterics asking me to call 999 because a fire had started.

“At first I couldn’t smell the smoke so I thought she was exaggerating but then all the alarms started going off so we evacuated. It was scary.

“I’m just glad they came down and told us straight away. We’re on gas down here so were worried if it spread. There was some confusion if there was anybody in the other flat upstairs but there’s not.”

Ms Peachey, her fiancé Scott Macleod, 44, and two women from the first floor flat were able to leave the house safely.

Ms Peachey told how she suffered a series of fits later that night after the stress of the incident.

She said: “I’m epileptic and it caused me to have a couple of fits.”

Ms Peachey said she was relieved her fiancé was at home else she may not have answered her door.

She added: “I suffer from a nervous disposition, so if my fiancé hadn’t been home I probably would have ignored them knocking.”

Other neighbours on the road spoke of smelling smoke from the fire inside their own homes.

Pete Gilmour, 60, who lives three doors away, said: “I could smell it in my hallway so I went out and I could see the flames and the black smoke billowing out.”

Ken Bambrook, 69, said: “You could see the flames at the window, they were leaping up.”

David Caton, 61, said: “I thought firemen had smashed the window to rescue someone.”

Fire crews smashed one of the two front windows to stop the fire shattering the glass.

Andy Jones, crew manager at Blackpool fire station, said: “The fire is being treated as suspicious and we are working with the police to determine the cause of the fire.

“When we arrived at the scene there were flames and smoke coming out of one of the windows. We searched the property but everyone was out and put the fire out which was in the upstairs front bedroom.”

A woman, arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life, yesterday remained in police custody.

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