A hero neighbour who woke to smoke billowing through Mattu’s Permier Store has described how she frantically knocked on doors from the flats above, fearing the building might explode.
20-year-old Danielle Chardoux lives directly opposite Mattu’s and Colebrook School of Dance, which were devastated by a fire in the early hours of this morning (Friday).
Danielle said: “I woke up randomly at quarter past three, I couldn’t get back to sleep and then heard an alarm going off.
“I looked out of the window and could see all of the smoke coming through.
“I was really worried.
“I rang the fire brigade as soon as I saw the smoke, it’s the first time I’ve dialled 999.
“They came within six minutes.
“I was outside for ages.
“It was really smokey.
“I thought it might explode.
“I started knocking on doors to get people out.
“One couple in one of the flats just moved in last week.
“It was a bit of a shock.
“Like a scene from a movie.
“It’s something that never happens in the area.
“It’s been a bit mad.
“I’m glad everyone’s alright.
“I hope everyone helps them [Mattu’s out].
“I use the shop every day - I was just in there last night.
“They’re all so lovely.
“It’s absolutely heartbreaking.
“I saw inside the shop and it’s just black, the ceiling was hanging down like the roof had melted.”
Incident commander Lee Marsh, the deputy division commander for the east division at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue, said: “At approximately 3.30am this morning the fire control room received a call to the property on Union Street.
“The crews were met with quite an established fire and it was escalating.
“At the peak of the fire we had six appliances and one aerial platform.
“The fire has been extinguished and the incident scaled down and our fire investigations team are on site at the moment, starting their preliminary investigations to ascertain the cause and where the fire originated.
“I do believe that when the initial crew got here there were people still inside the property.
“All firefighters say no two incidents are the same and this has its own difficulties, with a commercial property on the ground floor and residential on the first floor - the layout was quite complicated.
“It’s been quite a challenge.
“We’re making sure the fire has been definitely extinguished and monitoring for as long as the fire investigations take.”