Page last updated at 12:15 GMT, Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Fire badly damages charity pool

Fire has badly damaged a swimming pool complex at a children's charity centre in Somerset.

The blaze also burned down outbuildings at the British Institute for Brain Injured Children (Bibic) in Bawdrip.

Crews stopped the fire spreading to the main building - Knowle Hall - and an investigation has begun into the cause.

The charity's chief executive John Bennett said he saw smoke rising from the back of the building as he arrived for work on Tuesday morning.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service has ruled out arson as the cause of the fire.

"We're just devastated because this is part of what Bibic does with families and we've lost this fantastic facility now," he said.

Ceiling collapsed

"We caught it just in time. Had I been another 10 or 15 minutes later, according to the fire department, it would have gained a hold on the main building which is an 1804 build, which would have been a sad loss."

The ceiling of the 19-year-old complex has collapsed down into the pool leaving a "charred mess" and only the four walls remain, he said.

"It forms part of our main therapy with the children," said Mr Bennett.

"It's a sensory swimming pool, it has lights and music. It's such a shame."

Staff were keen to continue with "business as usual", he added.

Bibic supports youngsters with learning and behavioural difficulties and cares for children with autism, cerebral palsy, and Down's syndrome.



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Cash boost plan for town charity
06 May 08 |  Somerset
Birthday plans for child charity
09 Sep 07 |  Somerset

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

FROM OTHER NEWS SITES
Rye and Battle Observer Blaze at children's charity centre - 18 hrs ago
Bristol Evening Post Fire rips through kids charity centre - 22 hrs ago
Bridgewater Mercury bibic fire "could not have come at a worse time" - 42 hrs ago



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific