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Pentlow community group loses £10,000 worth of equipment after large fire destroys barn





Cavendish Community Council members (L-R) Pete Watkins, Mike Ward and Jeff Taylor with some of their fire damaged property at Pentlow Farm..Pic - Richard Marsham. (6622274)
Cavendish Community Council members (L-R) Pete Watkins, Mike Ward and Jeff Taylor with some of their fire damaged property at Pentlow Farm..Pic - Richard Marsham. (6622274)

A community group must replenish 20 years of equipment – reserved for village fundraising events – after the entire stock was destroyed in a fierce blaze.

The supplies, which had been stored in a building in Pentlow, were reduced to blackened ash, following a fire earlier this month.

Cavendish Community Council had rented the barn on Pentlow Farm, where it stored a range of equipment for its village fundraising events.

Group chairman Mike Ward said the group had accumulated the stock over two decades.

He estimated the financial loss at £10,000, with insurance expected to cover just under half this amount.

“We never thought our rainy day fund would be used to restock all the equipment that we have lost,” he said.

Following a visit to the scene, Mr Ward described the aftermath as “carnage”, which had taken fire crews more than two hours to contain.

The incident has been a big blow for the village.

“Everybody is shocked and sympathetic,” said Mr Ward.

Marques, barbecues and tables were among the essential supplies housed in the blaze.

The group organises annual events which generate funds for good causes in the community.

Since the incident, the community council has been forced to temporarily refuse funding requests until after its open gardens event in June, when the group hopes to replenish its funds.

Should the group fail to purchase some of the equipment required for the village fete in the summer, supplies, such as marques, may have to be rented at a cost of £200 each.

Mr Ward added that other groups in the village could also be faced with the same dilemma.