Heroic Sheffield fire family back home

Janet Thornton and her kids Tom, Jamie, Sam and Billy who are back in their home after fire damaged their neighbours house
Janet Thornton and her kids Tom, Jamie, Sam and Billy who are back in their home after fire damaged their neighbours house
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A heroic family who battled in vain to save a neighbour from a house fire have finally moved back into their own property - seven months after it was gutted in the blaze.

Janet Thornton’s family are settling back into their repaired house on Poplar Avenue, Beighton, Sheffield, after it was almost destroyed in a fire which spread from neighbour Richard Hobson’s house in March.

Two of Janet’s teenage sons, Tom and Jamie, used a garden hosepipe to try and put out the fire, jumping on the roof of their rear extension to spray water through the back window of Mr Hobson’s home.

Sadly the blaze killed Mr Hobson and left his elderly mother and sister homeless too.

The fire spread to the Thorntons’ property, causing major damage and destroying all their possessions.

While their house of 20 years was being repaired, the family had to live in a smaller rented three-bedroom property on nearby Rosemary Road, where Janet lived with four of her five sons.

She had to share her bedroom with her 12-year-old son Sam as part of the temporary arrangement.

The house had to be taken back to its shell, with the kitchen, bathroom, ceiling and roof all being replaced as part of the extensive repair job.

Among the items lost in the fire were many things of sentimental value, including the baby clothes worn by her sons when they came out of hospital.

Janet, who works as a carer, said the family was delighted to be back in their own home once again.

“It is brilliant. It has been hectic and a bit emotional because it brings back memories of the stuff we haven’t got. But to come home - I can’t tell you how lovely it is.

While they have been out of their home, the family have had plenty of support from the local community in Beighton.

Beighton Scout Group raised £500 at a sponsored snookerthon.

Beaver Scouts, Cub Scouts, Scouts and Explorer Scouts played snooker and various other sports throughout the night to support the Thorntons.

Janet said she was grateful for the support the family have had.

“Everybody has rallied around. I can’t thank everybody enough,” she said.

“For such a small community they have been absolutely brilliant with all of us.”