Bride thanks public after wedding dress destroyed in Belton house fire
- Credit: Archant
A bride-to-be whose dream wedding dress was destroyed in a house fire has thanked well-wishers after she was inundated with offers of a replacement.
Sarah Cassie said that women she had never met were prepared to lend their dresses, while shops and wedding suppliers were providing accessories and treats for the big day.
The 39-year-old was devastated when the ivory gown she had picked months ago was damaged beyond repair when a fire broke out at her neighbour's house just weeks before she was due to tie the knot.
The dress was in the care of best-friend and maid-of-honour Sarah Chapman who lost virtually all her family's possessions in the blaze in Rosedale Gardens, Belton, on March 28.
And while her main focus was helping her friend, there was still the issue of finding another dress quickly and on a shoe-string budget.
MORE: Pair describe how they entered a burning home in Belton to rescue a trapped cocker spaniel Having reached out to people on Facebook Miss Cassie said she was overwhelmed by the number of people wanting to help.
The original dress although not expensive had been altered to fit perfectly.
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Losing it was upsetting and stressful, she said, although she was mindful of the fact her neighbours had lost everything.
But the kind response of friends and strangers had helped, and in the end she chose a new dress from Catrina's in Gorleston, the shop giving a hefty discount and also gifting the accessories.
'Initially it was all about the fire and what my friends had lost. It wasn't until later on that someone said the dress was ruined,' Miss Cassie said.
'We checked it over and it was all melted and smoke damaged.
'The most important thing is having a beautiful day and marrying the man I love. The dress plays a big part. You only wear it once but every bride wants to look beautful on the day. As they say 'all eyes are on the bride'.'
Because the family development worker also makes meringues for wedding suppliers her contacts in the trade helped with extras like lanterns, chair sashes, and signs.
The generosity of everyone who had rushed to her aid, including those who had raised more than £100 via an online donation page, meant she could marry fiance Chris Rogerson, 34, at The Ivy House Country Hotel in Oulton Broad, on May 11 knowing that all the preparations had been made.
She was keen to thank Catrina's Bridalwear in Gorleston, Sam Race Venue Decoration, Kerry Groves Epic Chair Covers, Sammy Ampleford of Prestige Events and Weddings, Louise Fenn of Don't Tell the Groom, Bex Adams of RLA Wedding Designs, Vanessa Kisby of Sweeties in Beccles, and Glenys Bright and daughter Lorinda Leon who set up the donation page.
The blaze took hold while the family were nearby, Martin Chapman beating back flames to rescue the family dog Ruby who was trapped inside.