Sudbury: Gran thanks ‘hero’ after escape from fire

A GRANDMOTHER has thanked a young man who potentially saved her life when her property was targeted in a night of arson attacks in Sudbury.

Jean Cooper said the passer-by, named as Russ Jarvis, was her “hero” as he managed to alert her to the blaze which had spread to her property in Tudor Road, Sudbury, and help her to safety.

The fire, which began in a caravan in Mrs Cooper’s driveway at 5.20am yesterday morning, is being treated as arson by police.

Police are appealing for information about the blaze, as well as a further four in Sudbury and Great Cornard all around the same time, which are all being treated as suspicious and linked.

Speaking yesterday, Mrs Cooper, 72, told how she had been asleep in bed when she heard banging on her front door.

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She went to look out of her window, falling and damaging her arm in the process, and went downstairs to open the door.

The young man got her out of the house, tried to use a hose to put the fire out, and then called the fire brigade, she said.

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Mrs Cooper, a grandmother-of-15 and great-grandmother-of-four, said: “He was fantastic, he really was. The youngsters do get a bad name and he couldn’t have done more if he tried.

“He went next door and woke them up and took off his coat and gave it to me. He really was a hero.”

Mrs Cooper described how the fire, which completely destroyed the caravan, had reached all the way up the side of her house, managing to break two windows and cause damage inside.

She said the young man, who is thought to live in Sycamore Road, Great Cornard, was treated for smoke inhalation by a paramedic. Neither had to go to hospital.

Mrs Cooper’s daughter, Jayne Moore, 50, from Chappel, said her mother had been “lucky”.

She added how the family were “angry” over what had happened.

“We just wish we knew who did it. It’s absolutely stupid,” she said. “They do something so quick and anything could’ve happened.”

Mrs Cooper’s family all wanted to thank the man who helped her.

The fire service also attended a wheelie bin fire in Newton Road, Sudbury, at 4.41am yesterday morning. It spread to a fence and a house where a family were asleep inside. They were able to put out the fire before the fire service arrived. The gas main was ruptured and the electricity also had to be turned off.

Firefighters also attended wheelie bin fires in Sycamore Road, Great Cornard, at 4.16am and Betty Cocker Grove, Sudbury, at 4.35am.

Police were also notified of a fifth fire – a wheelie bin which was set alight on York Road, Sudbury, between 11pm on Saturday night and 8.15am yesterday morning.

Anyone with information should call Sudbury police on 01284 774100.

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