Rural pub is hit by chimney blaze

CELEBRATIONS for the New Year were put on temporary hold at a west Suffolk pub yesterday after a fire broke out in the chimney of the building.

Firefighters were called to the blaze at The Bull, in The Street, Troston, near Bury St Edmunds, shortly after 3pm.

It happened in the bar as part-time barman and helper Peter Heath were serving customers.

There were a handful of people getting ready for the final fling of 2010 when there was a huge roar which came from the large open fireplace.

Mr Heath said at first he thought it was the big screen TV over the fireplace which had blown up, but then realised it was the chimney on fire.


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Along with others in the pub they rushed outside to see the flames shooting out from the roof.

“I did the only sensible thing and called for the fire brigade and they were here in next to no time and dealt with it. They were brilliant,” he said.

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A customer in the pub swept into action before the crew arrived and put jugs of cold water on to the hearth to help quell the flames.

“Good job he was in here at the time as he is a former RAF fireman,” said Mr Heath. “My main concern was the three cats who were upstairs, but there was no serious damage to the building.”

A fire engine from Ixworth was called to the incident and crews used chimney equipment to tackle the blaze which was put out just before 3.30pm.

Meanwhile, a family in the Essex village of Belchamp Walter, near Sudbury, were clearing up yesterday after a separate chimney fire.

Crews from Sible Hedingham, Colchester and three from Suffolk were called at 10.30pm on Thursday after the alarm was raised in Gestingthorpe Road.

Two hose reels were used to put out the fire by 11.15pm, which had spread to the roof area, while firefighters used chimney rods and a thermal imaging camera to check for any remaining hot spots.

The homeowner, who did not want to be named, said there was a bit of smoke in the house, but firefighters had put out the fire very quickly.

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