Fire at Hempnall farm could have been catastrophic

Picture: Archant Library.

Picture: Archant Library.

A mother who helps her son run a family farm said a fire on their land could have been catastrophic.

Neighbours called the fire service to Willow Farm on Field Lane in Hempnall on Friday afternoon when they noticed some bales of straw were alight.

The fire crew from Long Stratton used hose reels and fire appliances to put out the fire which had caught four bales alight and also stubble.

But 70-year-old Liz Allen says the wind was blowing that afternoon and taking the fire towards houses nearby which could have been devastating.

She said: 'I wasn't here at the time, I was in Norwich, but my son was here.

'A kind neighbour phoned him and said, 'I think you've got a fire on your land'.

'My son got a tractor and a helper put some discs onto it and they put the discs around the fire to stop it.

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'The fire service had already arrived - they were very quick.

'The trouble was the wind was taking the fire towards the houses that are only 50 to 100 yards away. I hate fire, it's scary - we had a fire many years ago.

'I am more annoyed than upset at what could have happened. If only those who caused the fire knew what the consequences could have been.'

Mrs Allen said that during the school holidays they had to put up with children sometimes playing on farm land.

The farmer whose family have had the farm since 1960 said there had been strange happenings at the farm this week.

Earlier in the week they had loaded two trailers with bales of straw ready to be moved to a pig farm.

The next morning they found the five foot high bales had been pushed off the trailers.

They also discovered someone had been in the chicken hut. Two of the chickens were missing, and one of the chickens had blood on it.