Wellington fire: Family left devastated after fire destroys home

Photo: File
Photo: File

Wellington's Tara Stanley should have been celebrating with her friends on Monday, instead the young mother has been left devastated after her family home was destroyed in a fire.

Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) crews were called at approximately 6:08am on September 9, following reports of a house fire in Maxwell Street.

On arrival they found the house well alight with the fire in one of the rear bedrooms and spreading to the roof.

Fire and Rescue NSW station commander Mark Moroney said the blaze travelled through the roof and burnt out a section of it. Fire had also spread to adjoining rooms.

The fire was brought under control and has since been extinguished, but Comd. Moroney said due to the heat and smoke, significant damage was done to the remainder of the house and its contents.

Ms Stanley and her children had just moved into the home on Friday.

"We're just devastated really. My whole life is gone," she said.

The children were so excited to be in their new home, Ms Stanley said, but that has since been dashed.

"My daughter is heartbroken...If we were in the house I just don't know (what could have happened), I'm just so thankful to be here today," she said.

Their belongings, including the children's school clothes, furniture and Ms Stanley's work equipment were destroyed.

"I'm a photographer so all of my livelihood is in the house; my cameras, computer. Stuff that I can't get back.... that's just priceless," she said.

Ms Stanley was part of the Wellington Cowgirls league tag team so she and her family were in Dubbo on Sunday to cheer on the men during the Group 11 grand final games at Apex Oval.

Thankfully they stayed in Dubbo that night and were told of the fire Monday morning.

"We were so lucky not to be in there because we wouldn't of made it out if we were," Ms Stanley said. "I don't understand it. Our whole life has gone in one night and I don't know where to go from here really."

A Go Fund Me page has been set up by Tori Town to help the family.

"I know how hard Tara works, she's a single mum of two and works multiple jobs while running a business. She'd do the same for us and I would never hesitate in helping out a friend," Ms Town said.

At the time of being published online more than $3300 has been raised for the family.

Forensic services police have examined the property and police are following leads.

Anyone with information are urged to contact Wellington Police on 6840 2099.

FRNSW crews were also called to a house fire in Walker Crescent on Saturday, September, 7 at 12:30pm.

The house had recently been vacated and was unoccupied at the time.

Cmdr. Moroney said it appears as though the fire had been deliberately lit in one of the rooms and has caused substantial damage.

"On both occasions we had early notification to the fire so were able to extinguish the fire before it destroyed the house as a whole," he said.

"Both of these fires we were able to contain to the room of origin.

"We were able to provide police with the area of origin and they will make the forensic determination of the cause. It appears as though both fires have been deliberately lit by persons unknown."

Officers attached to Orana Mid Western Police District started an investigation into the incident and wish to speak with three children, aged between eight and 10 years old, who were seen near the house earlier in the day.