Dagenham fire: Thousands donated for families affected

Drone picture of the blaze firefighters are fighting in Dagenham

A drone picture of the fire that affected the Ballards Road and Beam Parklands area - Credit: Dean Marsh

A fundraising page has raised thousands of pounds in a matter of hours for those affected by a major fire in Dagenham.

Fourteen homes were destroyed after a blaze broke out in the Ballards Road and Beam Parklands area yesterday afternoon (July 19), Barking and Dagenham Council said.

An emergency rest centre was set up at Dagenham & Redbridge Football Club and a community assistance centre is now in place at London East in Yew Tree Avenue.

Residents in Stratford Close and Farm Close, as well as one home in Boleyn Gardens, are still unable to return home.

These residents are either staying with family and friends or have been supported with finding temporary accommodation, the council said.

Those who were evacuated in Acre Road, Wilthorne Gardens, Brook Avenue, Rookery Crescent, Boleyn Gardens and Beech Gardens have been permitted to go back, a spokesperson added.

To support those families who have lost their homes or seen their properties damaged, the council has set up a fundraising page which has already raised more than £8,000.

It said: "As you can imagine, it's an extremely difficult time for the people who have lost everything.

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"While their personal possessions can never be replaced, this will hopefully help them get back on their feet in the coming weeks."

The authority said it is not accepting donated items.

No-one was injured in the fire but some pets died, the council said, although London Fire Brigade reported that a man and a woman were taken to hospital suffered with smoke inhalation.

Around 100 firefighters attended the blaze, which the brigade was called to just before 1.50pm.

As well as the damage to homes, 25 vehicles were destroyed and eight hectares of parkland were damaged.

Crews had the fire under control by 10.40pm after working in "incredibly hot, difficult conditions", fire commander Paul McClenaghan said.

Council leader Darren Rodwell posted on social media to say he was proud of the community's response.

He said: "We managed to make sure that all families that needed a bed last night got their bed in hotels and at the rest centre as well.

"The devastation is severe. We must thank the fantastic London Fire Brigade for doing everything they have done."

To donate to the fundraising page, visit gofundme.com/f/help-for-families-beam-parklands-fire-2022.