A MAN has been charged with attempted murder after a terrifying gas blast at a Doncaster bedsit which caused six residents to flee their homes.
Fire crews who were called to a large Edwardian villa in Town Moor had to break into one of the flats - and found more than one seat of fire burning.
Another six flats in the semi-detached house in Windsor Road had to be evacuated at around 10pm on Friday because of fears of further explosions.
“Some of the residents reported hearing a loud bang and smoke coming from one of the flats,” said a spokesman for South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue.
“We broke into the flat and found the kitchen well alight.
“There was a lot of damage, which was confined to the kitchen area.”
Police launched an investigation into the fire and the following day arrested a 43-year-old man.
He was questioned over the weekend and charged with attempted murder and arson with intent to endanger life.
The house is owned by Bessacarr businessman John Massarella, who is currently away in the United States.
His wife, Gillian, was at the property yesterday sorting out the clean-up operation.
She said: “There’s been quite a lot of fire damage.
“All I know is there is a man who the police are speaking to, and I think he might be appearing in court.
“I don’t want to say any more about it.”
A resident at another flat in Windsor Road, who did not wish to named, said: “We saw a lot of fire engines turn up and there were people in the street but we couldn’t see any fire at the front of the property.
“No-one seemed to know what it was about and I don’t think there have been any problems there.”
A South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “The incident was reported at approximately 9.45pm on Friday, on Windsor Road.
“A property on the road was on fire. No injuries were sustained by anyone.
“A 43-year-old man was arrested on Saturday at another address and charged on Sunday night.”
n A MAN appeared before Doncaster magistrates yesterday and was remanded in custody to appear at Sheffield Crown Court next Monday on charges of attempted murder and arson with intent to endanger life.