Elderly in fear at blaze in high winds

Fire at a house in Derryadd near Derrytrasna
Fire at a house in Derryadd near Derrytrasna
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AS a late night blaze at a house near Derrytrasna got out of control elderly residents spoke of their fear that the fire would spread in high winds.

The arson attack, at the landmark property on the Ardmore Road, Derryadd has been utterly condemned by a local councillor.

The fire was spotted at the former Post Office shortly before 8.30pm on Tuesday night.

No one appears to have been injured during the blaze at the property which is now derelict.

NI Fire Service said they were called to the property at around 8.24pm. The fire at the unoccupied farm house was ‘well alight on arrival’.

Two appliances from Lurgan and one from Portadown dealt with the fire.

“Police are investigating the cause,” said a NIFS spokesperson.

However, the property, which is a well known building in the area, has been destroyed.

The house originally belonged to Patsy McKenna, where they had operated the Post Office for many years. It has been vacant for a some years now.

According to Fire Fighters at the scene, it appeared the blaze was started deliberately.

Local SDLP Cllr Declan McAlinden said he was informed that the front door of the property was open and the fire had been started in a downstairs room.

Residents close by were concerned because of the strong winds but the Fire Brigade managed to bring the blaze under control.

Cllr McAlinden said: “If the fire was started deliberately I would like to condemn these actions.

“This house has been there a number of years and many older people will remember it as the local Post Office.

“Local residents many of whom are elderly are worried that the strong winds would carry the flames toward their properties.

“With winter fast approaching I call on residents in rural areas to watch out for their neighbours and derelict properties and report any suspicious activity,” said the SDLP councillor.