Family of house inferno victims slam '˜heartless' thieves

The family of a couple who were left devastated by a fire which destroyed their home and business have said they have been left with nothing after thieves stole a caravan from their property while the home owner was recovering from a heart attack in hospital after the blaze.

Friday, 12th February 2016, 11:44 am
Updated Wednesday, 17th February 2016, 7:34 am
Farm house and garage fire near A47 at Thorney - Classic Wedding Cars EMN-160902-192327009

The fire struck at the property in The Causeway, Thorney which was owned by Melvin and Sue Dolby on Monday night. It started in a garage, where a number of cars, used for a wedding car business, were completely burnt out.

The garage and house were also destroyed.

Mr Dolby is still recovering in hospital after suffering a heart attack and the effects of smoke inhalation.

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Farm house and garage fire near A47 at Thorney - Classic Wedding Cars EMN-160902-192438009

Lisa Dolby, the couple’s daughter in-law said: “He is recovering, but it is going to be a long road. His breathing is better than it was, and he is eating now. But we have to make sure his heart gets stronger. It is the first heart attack he has had.”

While the family were away from the property visiting him in hospital on Thursday night, between 6pm and 8pm, thieves broke in and towed away a caravan, which had survived the inferno.

Three Shetland Ponies were also released from a paddock - although they were rounded up safely.

Lisa said: “The only thing that was salvaged from the fire was the caravan, which he pulled away from the fire.

Farm house and garage fire near A47 at Thorney - Classic Wedding Cars EMN-160902-192438009

“When we found out the caravan had been stolen I was gobsmacked.

“I was devastated for them. How low can people get. Some people clearly don’t have hearts. To go onto people’s property and take the one thing left after the fire.

“They have nothing left, not even the clothes they were standing in.

“The house was his (Mr Dolby’s) life work. The only things they had after the fire were in the caravan.

“The thieves even let out the ponies. We think they tries to put them in the caravan.

“The house will have to be demolished, and I think they (Mr and Mrs Dolby) were planning on staying in the caravan on site to look after the animals.

“They will stay with family for the time being.

“We have had lots of offers for help. This was Mel’s lifes work - he never took a holiday, and worked seven days a week.

“It is devastating.”

The caravan is described as being a twin axle, three birth, end bathroom Bessacar Cameo from 2007.

Now police are appealing to trace the drivers of two Ford Transit style vans seen in the area at the time. One is described as being blue, and one is described as being white.

If you were driving a van near the scene, or have any information about the theft, contact Cambridgeshire police on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.