Hornchurch headteacher and students step in to help elderly neighbour as fire rages in her garden

PUBLISHED: 17:30 20 April 2018

The London Fire Brigade was called to Albany Road at 3.14pm on April 19 to reports of a shed alight in a back garden. Photo: Google Maps

The London Fire Brigade was called to Albany Road at 3.14pm on April 19 to reports of a shed alight in a back garden. Photo: Google Maps


A Hornchurch headteacher, alongside a number of students and other staff members, briefly turned into a firefighter yesterday afternoon (April 19) when she helped put out a fire in the back garden of a nearby house.

Yesterday afternoon, Val Masson, The Albany’s headteacher, was walking the streets around the school with Moazem Parvaze, the school’s education advisor, and a number of students, when they noticed thick black smoke bellowing from a nearby bungalow in Albany Road.

A fire had started in the property’s garden and spread to a nearby shed.

Staff and students ran through to the bungalow’s garden and began trying to move items out of the fire’s path until the London Fire Brigade (LFB) arrived and extinguished the fire.

The bungalow’s resident was an elderly lady with respiratory problems - school staff have since gone to visit her and understand that a number of personal items kept in her shed were destroyed by the fire.

She was extremely grateful to all the staff and students who came to her aid.

Ms Masson said: “As soon as we saw the smoke Moazem and I ran across to the bungalow followed by several students,

“We didn’t think of the danger only that we could possibly help a member of our community.”

An LFB spokeswoman confirmed three fire engines were deployed to Albany Road at 3.14pm on April 19 to reports of an 8x8 shed on fire in a garden.

The shed was entirely destroyed, and it took firefighters just over half an hour to bring the fire under control.

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