Friends, colleages and family rally round to save Christmas for house fire victim

Scene of house fire, North Byland, Illingworth.
Scene of house fire, North Byland, Illingworth.
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Colleagues, friends and family of a woman whose home was ravaged by a fire rallied round so she had Christmas gifts to give her children.

Kelly McIntyre, 35, and her two sons lost all of their belongings in the blaze at her house at North Byland in Illingworth less than two weeks before Christmas.

“We lost everything,” she said. “We only had the clothes we were wearing.”

Fortunately, they were not at home when the fire broke out at around 4.30am on Sunday, December 16 but the flames gutted the house and they have had to stay with family ever since.

On hearing about the family’s ordeal, Kelly’s colleagues at ISS, agency PMP and Nestle, where she works as a cleaner, started a collection and raised £590.

And officers at Calderdale Police, who investigated the blaze, collected money to buy gifts so the family still had presents to open on Christmas Day.

“I can’t thank people enough,” said Kelly.

“I just want to say a massive thank you. I can’t believe how kind people have been. I didn’t expect it at all.”

Darren Murphy, 36, of Bankfield Yard, Halifax, was arrested and charged in connection with the fire. His case has been adjourned until March.