Havant carer praises 'absolutely brilliant' firefighters and daughter's quick thinking for saving house following blaze in Glenleigh Park

A CARER has praised firefighters and her daughter for saving their house from burning down in Havant.

Tuesday, 10th May 2022, 4:55 am

Kim Bettesworth came back to her home in Glenleigh Park on Friday afternoon to see her garden ‘ruined’ and the property damaged by a fire.

Downstairs resident, Belinda Stevens, 50, was burning sage to detract bees that morning, but the bundle then set alight.

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Damage to houses and gardens in Glenleigh Park, Havant, where a fire started in one of the gardens on Friday, May 6 at about 5pm. Picture: Sarah Standing (090522-3576)

Ms Bettesworth, a carer who works in Horndean, told The News: ‘It was caused by burning sage, which is used to get rid of the bees, because there are loads of them round here.

‘She just put it out in the morning, and the smoke just made the fire.

‘It was an accident.

‘It caught our shed alight, as well as the one next door.

The aftermath of the fire Picture: Sarah Standing (090522-3584)

‘Luckily, we’re all alive and not hurt.’

Ms Stevens first noticed the fire after hearing a crackling noise.

She told The News: ‘It was terrifying and such a massive shock.

‘I was so grateful the family weren’t upstairs, and no one was hurt.’

The burned-out gate Picture: Sarah Standing (090522-3590)

Ms Bettesworth said the flames reached the back door of the house, and some of the windows melted due to the heat.

Her 13-year-old daughter, Honie Ware, who was inside, only noticed the blaze by hearing screams from nearby.

She ran to her mum’s bedroom window, closed it to prevent smoke from pouring into the house, and dashed outside through the front door.

Ms Bettesworth added: ‘It was up to her quick thinking, bless her heart.

Devastation Picture: Sarah Standing (090522-3598)

‘If she hadn’t shut the window, the smoke would have got into the house and the whole place would have been up.’

Ms Bettesworth said she was ‘petrified’ about what her daughter went through, who is now struggling to sleep following the ordeal.

Firefighters from Emsworth and Havant arrived at the scene with breathing apparatus and hose jets.

Roughly 10 emergency service personnel attended.

A spokesperson from Havant Fire Station said the shed was ‘well alight’ when the crews arrived, but were able to reduce any smoke damage by getting water onto it quickly.

Picture: Sarah Standing (090522-3604)

Ms Bettesworth, who has two other young children, praised their courage.

She said: ‘They were absolutely brilliant.

‘They tackled the windows straight away, otherwise the fire would have gone through to the inside completely.’