Residents offer support to Newton Poppleford blaze couple

The remains of a cottage in Newton Poppleford after a thatch roof fire. Picture: GRAHAM MILLS

The remains of a cottage in Newton Poppleford after a thatch roof fire. Picture: GRAHAM MILLS - Credit: Archant

Residents across East Devon have united to help a ‘selfless’ couple after their home was destroyed by fire.

As the Herald went to press yesterday, a fundraising page had netted nearly £1,300 in less than 24 hours to help Pat and Roy McClymont, who lived in the thatched-roof property in Newton Poppleford.

Lorna Brice-Nye, of Ottery St Mary, launched the JustGiving page on Wednesday and has set a target of £10,000 to try and help the couple ‘rebuild their lives’.

Lorna, 46, who knows the couple through Ottery Parish Church’s Explore group, said: “They felt so privileged to live there. If I could.

“People do not like talking about money, but, in the end, you need that cushion - you need that support to rebuild.

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Lorna said she was ‘so proud’ of peoples’ response to the fundraising bid, adding: “Some people do not even know Pat and Roy and they are still trying to help.”

She said of the amount raised so far: “I am happily astonished and just gobsmacked.”

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Support for the couple has also come from the local community, as Newton Poppleford residents have rallied to offer donations of food, clothes and toiletries.

Zoe Adey, of King Alfred Way, reached out to the couple to offer them support if they needed it. She addded: “It’s really sad. I have lived here all my life. My friend had a house fire several years ago and she was basically left with just the clothes that she was just wearing.

“I remember what she went through at the beginning. It was the essential, everyday stuff - clothes, food, toiletries, that she needed, rather than replacing the longer-term stuff. It is stuff we take for granted.

“I do not want to do nothing. Everyone is just really concerned, it’s quite a close-knit community and, when something big happens, people want to do their bit to help.”

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