Fire rips through Eye couple's home

An elderly couple's home was devastated in a major fire on Tuesday that broke out in the early hours.

An elderly couple's home was devastated by a fire in the centre of Eye this week.

More than 60 firefighters from Suffolk and Norfolk fought to contain the early-hours blaze on Tuesday.

It started on the ground floor of the three-storey house in Church Street just before 3am and spread quickly through the stairwell into the roof. The couple, who are understood to be in their 80s, and their live-in carer fled to safety after raising the alarm.

All three were given oxygen therapy at the scene for the effects of breathing in smoke, and the elderly woman was taken by ambu-lance to West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds, for further treatment.

The street was closed in both directions between the B1117 Castle Street junction and the Wellington Road junction during the emer-gency. The fire was out by 6am, but the area was cord-oned off for several hours as fire crews cleared away smouldering timbers and rubble strewn across the street and fitted a tarpaulin over a large area of roof destroyed in the blaze.

Assistant divisional fire officer Dave Pederson, based at Ipswich, said the blaze was not being treated as suspicious. He added: "We were faced with a fire that had started in the dining room in an under-stairs cupboard and spread through the stairwell into the second floor. It's a huge old building that appears to have been converted into one property a long time ago, and the second floor has been severely damaged. However, the crews under-took salvage from early on.

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"There's a lot of personal belongings in there and they have managed to protect these."