Fundraiser for family-of-five who lost everything in caravan fire near Lancaster raises £20k in 24 hours

A fundraiser set up to help a family who lost everything in a fire at their home at the weekend has raised almost £20,000 in less than 24 hours.

By Gayle Rouncivell
Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 8:17 am

Bob Howard set up the Gofundme page to help his friends after fire destroyed their vehicle and two caravans, which they lived in on a site in Folly Lane, Slyne.

The traveller community - followed swiftly by numerous others locally and across the country - quickly banded together to raise much-needed funds to help the family piece their lives back together.

Fortunately, the family - who have not been named - were not hurt in the incident, which happened just before 9am on Saturday.

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Some of the devastation caused by the fire.

Six fire engines were called to the scene to extinguish the blaze.

All that was rescued in the blaze was a wedding photo and a copy of the Bible.

Bob said: "Imagine losing everything you have in the world. All they have got left is the clothes they were wearing.

"They have got to start again. They have lost clothes, possessions, family heirlooms. I have got two kids and to be stripped of everything I own and have to start again, I couldn't think ot anything worse."

The family's vehicle was destroyed in the blaze.

Bob said everyone has been pulling together since he launched the fundraising page on Sunday, with the traveller community from across England and Scotland, as well as many other people, have donated in their droves.

"I had no idea it would go the way it has done," Bob said. "Word got around the traveller community from Scotland down to Kent.

"But it's not just travellers, everybody has donated. It's mindblowing."

The Gofundme page has so far raised £16,380, although Bob believes the figure is probably closer to £20,000 due to cash donations received.

Some of the wreckage from the fire which destroyed two caravans and a vehicle in Slyne on Saturday.

You can donate to help the family online here.

Some of the devastation caused by the fire.
Smoke rises from the fire in Folly Lane on Saturday. Photo by Tony North