A DODWORTH couple have been left heartbroken after their family home burst into flames this week - destroying everything they have worked for.
In the early hours of Tuesday morning, John and Debbie Ingham saw their house engulfed in flames on Mitchelson Avenue within minutes of the decking setting alight.
The pair now only have the clothes they were wearing after the devastating blaze.
A spokesperson for South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said: “Several fire crews attended an accidental premise fire at 1.30am on Mitchelson Avenue, Dodworth, Barnsley.
“The crews came away at 4.50am.”
Nikki Ingham, the couple’s daughter, said: “Monday started off great - it was a hot day which we were all enjoying.
“During the evening, the decking area in my parents’ garden had caught fire.
“Within minutes their entire house had caught fire - it had been engulfed by flames and smoke.
“It destroyed everything and the fire was too intense to pin point the route cause.
“They now don’t know when they’ll be able to go back home.”
The couple, who had been living at their house for more than 20 years, have now lost everything they have worked so hard for.
“My parents have lost everything,” she said.
“The only clothes they have left are the ones they were wearing.
“They have lost their home of more than 20 years and all the memories that were in there.
“We also count our lucky stars that they are still here with us.”
Nikki has set up a fundraiser to allow her parents to start a new life - and almost £2,000 has already been raised.
John and Debbie, in a joint statement, told the Chronicle: “In all honesty we’re just numb. “There is no words to describe how heartbroken and devastated we are, counting our lucky stars to have got out in time.
“The generosity of others has truly blown us away, we cannot thank every single person enough, we wish we could thank them all personally.
“We are truly blessed to have amazing family and friends, plus the people that we do not know that came to make sure we are safe and needed anything.
“We appreciate it more than anyone would ever know.”
It comes after South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue bosses urged residents to get a smoke alarm.
Area manager Mat Gillatt said: “Smoke alarms don’t get the credit they deserve - they really do save lives.
“But they can only save you if they are working.
“By testing and dusting them regularly, you ensure they are working should you ever need them - and don’t just take our word for it, either.
“Our figures show that there have been 791 instances in the last three years where a smoke alarm has sounded and given occupants early warning of a fire in their home.
“Unfortunately, there were 430 cases where smoke alarms weren’t present or didn’t work.
“Needless to say, the fire damage was worse in these cases.”
To donate to the fundraiser, follow the link on the Barnsley Chronicle website.