A bride-to-be is devastated after all her belongings were destroyed in a house fire that has left her home uninhabitable.
Louise Adams lost four bridesmaids’ dresses, wedding shoes, hair extensions and other items for her nuptials worth £1,000 – and now fears her big day may be cancelled.
The 35-year-old was at her semi-detached home in Tollesbury, Essex, with her children and fiancé Chris Townley when the fire broke out on Sunday.
Within five minutes the whole property was ablaze and the two smoke alarms in the property were not working.
She claims the fire was caused by a faulty freezer but Beko say “at this time there is no proof that a Beko product was involved or what the cause of the fire was.”
Louise’s community has rallied around her and Chris in a bid to make sure they still get to have their special day on August 8.
She said: “I am trying not to think about my big day because I’ve got other things to worry about like trying to find a place to live.
“I’ve lost about £1,000 worth of stuff but have lost loads more that’s just for my wedding.
“I lost the 3ft ‘love’ letters that stood underneath my stairs in the cupboard as well as flowers and things like that.
“We have nothing as everything is covered in smoke.
“We can’t stay there as the house is ruined. We have no beds or furniture, or a washing machine as we can’t live in the house. I have nowhere to store anything.”
Miss Adams claimed: “The fire started with a Beko standing freezer and next to that was an under counter freezer and a fridge.
“They all went up because of gases. The tall freezer went first, Chris heard it go bang as I was in the shower.
“He went to check what it was and said the back of the freezer (was) on fire and we had to get out.”
The mum of four and step-mum to two other children quickly called her 15-year-old stepdaughter Ashleigh.
Meanwhile Chris scooped up 19-month-old Nevaeh who was asleep on the sofa and the family ran outside.
Luckily, Louise’s daughter Lily, nine, was on holiday with her grandparents when the fire happened- but her favourite toys have been destroyed.
Louise added: “We ran out and could see from the utility room window, then the other two fridge freezers went bang.
“We rang 999 and the Tollesbury fire service was there in minutes, they were amazing.
“The house was up in five minutes.”
Thankfully no-one was hurt but their rented house was left uninhabitable and all their possessions were destroyed.
Louise also lost the bridesmaid’s shoes, all the balloons for the wedding, sweet carts and even her hair extensions that she was going to wear on her wedding day.
The couple are due to get married on August 8 at Colchester registry office before having a reception on August 10.
But the devastating house fire has thrown a spanner into the couple’s plans.
Louise said: “At the moment until I have somewhere to live I can’t think about it too much.”
She’s determined not to let the fire deter her from her plans and the local community has inundated the family with donations and gifts.
A friend of the family, Tracey Tape, rushed to their aid and started a Just Giving page in a bid to raise £2,000 to help them get back on their feet.
The page read: “As some of you will be aware, a young family lost nearly everything in a house fire. They are due to get married on August 8.
“This is where this lovely little village rallies around.
“She has lost her bridesmaid dresses, wedding suits, personal belongings, children’s clothes and toys, nappies, their own clothes and much more.”
The local community came forward with donations of a sofa, wedding dresses and even decorations.
The colour scheme for Louise’s wedding is rose gold and confetti, table runners and a card box have been donated.
Louise added: “We are grateful to everyone, it’s amazing. We didn’t know people could be so nice.”
Three fire crews rushed to the scene at about 8pm on Sunday and managed to get the flames out quickly but the smoke alarms were not active.
Tollesbury Fire Station’s watch manager Dave Farrant said: “The occupants of this house had a lucky escape from this fire.
“They had two smoke alarms in their property, but neither were working so they did not alert them to the fire.
“Luckily the occupants were awake and were able to get out of their house, but the delay in calling 999 meant their house has suffered bad damage and is not habitable.”
The family is now staying at Louise’s mum’s house in Canvey Island, Essex.
A spokeswoman for Beko confirmed that an investigation into the fire is ongoing.
She said: “Beko Plc are unable to make a comment as an investigation into the incident is still ongoing.
“At this time there is no proof that a Beko product was involved or what the cause of the fire was.”