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Winton student house catches fire with nine sleeping inside

They all managed to escape without injury

Firefighters were called to a student house on Bemister Road in Winton after a fire started with nine people sleeping inside.

The fire was said to have been started by bedding left too close to a space heater. The heater, located in the downstairs bedroom, had been left on overnight.

The six students who live in the house, with three guests also staying the night, say the fire started at 5:40am in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Fire crews from Christchurch, Westbourne, Springbourne and Redhill Park were present at the scene, as an extra two crews were needed to tackle the growing fire.

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The downstairs bedroom, taken before the fire by the previous tenants.

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The downstairs bedroom pictured after the fire

Stuart Granger, DWFRS station manager, said: "The first they knew about the fire was the fire itself and that awoke them and they tried to put the fire out by smothering it but they did the sensible thing at that point and left the building straight away.

"As they were leaving, they shouted to the other students and then the smoke detector started going off which enabled them to escape."

He said the students had been "very lucky".

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Emmy Whybrow, who lives in the house, told The Bournemouth Tab: "I just heard screaming and shouting from all the girls in the room telling us to get out the house…everyone was out the house so quickly and we made sure the neighbours were out too in case it spread as the room was completely alight. The fire brigade took about six minutes, but it felt like a year."

Emmy told us how important the fire door in the hallway had been, stopping the fire spreading into the kitchen.

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Emmy added: "We were all discussing what the damage could have been if she [one of the housemates] didn't notice straight away. Could have been a totally different story.

"We are so thankful to the firemen and The Red Cross – they were incredible."

The Bournemouth Tab also spoke to previous tenants of the house, who said: "I feel so bad for the students and the landlord. After living there for a year, we know how much work the landlord put into it – I hope it hasn't affect the student's livelihood too much."