Overwhelming support for appeal to help Lowestoft fire victims
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016
Neighbours who organised an appeal in aid of people who lost their homes in a devastating flat fire in which one person died have thanked the community for its overwhelming support.
Cindy McWade, 34, and Ursula Tame, 36, organised the collection for the victims of December's Roman Road fire in Lowestoft after seeing the devastation unfold before their very eyes.
Residents described how smoke billowed out of the first-floor flat as it was engulfed by flames, with neighbours desperately trying to save the life of a person trapped inside.
As a result the pair appealed for everything from electrical items to food and smaller goods to help those in the adjoining flats made homeless by the disaster over Christmas and new year.
The response was amazing – with people from as far away as Wymondham offering goods and Roman Hill Primary School making up a hamper for the victims to enjoy. Another man from Beccles donated crockery and duvets, while Mrs McWade and Mrs Tame also got a great response from shops and business they wrote to. Others donated cash and items of food.
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'It was really overwhelming,' said Mrs McWade.
'It went a lot further and quicker than I thought it was going to.We were really pleased with the response. Everyone just rallied together.
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'It shows that there are still some decent people out there that will rally round and help people.
'It was especially pleasing as it was Christmas.'
The Rev Damon Rogers, vicar at the nearby St Andrew's Church – which provided refuge for those affected by the blaze and helped Mrs McWade and Mrs Tame with the appeal – said: 'The response was wonderful with many, many people from the Roman Hill area, from Lowestoft as a whole and indeed from across Norfolk and Suffolk offering help and support.
'Of course the hard work for the appeal was undertaken by Cindy and Ursula and we are very grateful.
'Nothing can make up for the loss and the tragic circumstances of the fire will live on in the memory of those affected, but the response to the appeal has brought something very positive from a tragedy and has, for many, restored a sense of hope.
'For this we must be extremely thankful.'