A FAMILY who fled for their lives as fire engulfed their remote farmhouse home have spoken of the effects of their harrowing ordeal.
Helen Edwards and her five children were trapped as flames licked through their house in the New Brighton area of Minera last month.
They managed to escape after heroic 20-year-old Ryan Hope, the boyfriend of Ms Edwards’ 17-year-old daughter, kicked down a jammed door which was the only exit from the building.
Minera Primary School supply teacher Ms Edwards told the Leader that an episode on a family camping trip made her realise the impact of the blaze on her children.
She said: “It has affected the younger children.
“When we went camping in the fields recently we had lit a fire to toast marshmallows and my three-year-old Caledfryn went hysterical at the sight of fire.”
She said despite everything they have been through, having her family safe was most important.
“We might have lost the house but we are just so happy to still have each other,” she said.
“OK, we might have lost some family heirlooms, like Christening gowns, but my family being alive is more important than that.”
Ms Edwards said they now face the “struggle” of rebuilding the house, which would have to be pulled to the floor.
She said: “The whole house has to be knocked down. It’s unsafe after the fire.
“It is impractical to repair, so it will have to be rebuilt from scratch.
“We’re currently staying with my mum and dad in Trueddyn but we are trying to get a static caravan or something to live in while the house gets built.
“It’s going to be a struggle. But to be honest, I don’t think I could live in that house again, not with that corridor we were trapped in.”
On the night in question Ms Edwards, 43, was in bed upstairs with her four younger children when the fire broke out.
Her 17-year-old daughter, Manon, had fallen asleep downstairs with her boyfriend Ryan watching a film.
The house had been fitted with smoke alarms but in the event Ms Edwards was woken up by three loud bangs before the property became engulfed in smoke and flames.
Mr Hope, 20, from Coedpoeth, was hailed a hero after he managed to kick through the jammed door so the family, who were trapped in a corridor, could all get out.
About 30 firefighters worked through the night to combat the blaze.
Ms Edwards said: “It’s such a shame. I’d lived there 14 years.
“There’s a lot of history to the house. Before we moved in, it had been empty since the Second World War when the army were based in there.”
Ms Edwards said she had no indication of how much the cost of the fire would be or a timescale for when work on rebuilding the house can start.
A spokesman for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said the cause of the fire had still not been determined and that investigations were ongoing.