Aug 8 2012 by Sharon Liptrott, Dumfries Standard Wednesday
House fire at Lockerbie
TWO elderly women were taken to hospital after an early morning blaze destroyed a bungalow.
Former Hoddom Primary teacher Miss Margaret Campbell managed to escape as flames tore through her home at 54 West Acres in Lockerbie.
Along with a friend from Ayrshire who also got out unharmed, 75-year-old Miss Campbell was taken to hospital where both women were treated for “breathing problems”.
The fire broke out around five o’clock yesterday morning and it took firefighters several hours to bring it under control.
Fire bosses and police immediately launched a probe to try and pinpoint the cause.
The sound of arriving fire engines woke sleeping neighbours.
One, who asked not to be named, said: “I rushed out to see flames soaring into the sky from the roof. It was dreadful.
“I could not see Miss Campbell and her friend so they must have taken them off to hospital quickly.
“It is such a shock, absolutely dreadful. It must have happened so quickly but took a long time to put out.
“It is such a tragedy because Miss Campbell has the house up for sale. She is planning to move to England to be nearer some family there. There is not much to sell now is there?”
The neighbour added: “She is a very nice lady and we are all very fond of her and her Border collie, Hamlet, as she is always taking him for walks in the neighbourhood.
Another neighbour said: “We cannot believe it has happened. It is such a shock and so dreadful for Margaret. We are so glad that she and her friend managed to get out safely.
“We are glad to hear that they are both unharmed and our thoughts are with them.”
Two fire engines from Dumfries and one from Lockerbie attended the scene and it was finally brought under control at 9.41am.
A fire spokesman said: “We were alerted just after 5am and found the two ladies outside. They were taken to Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary for precautionary reasons to be checked out and they did not have any injuries.
“This is a serious house fire and an investigation is under way to find the cause. It will be a few days before that is completed.”
Firefighters had to return to Lockerbie at 10.25 am yesterday after a crane working in a yard of one of the companies on the Stevens Croft forestry site at Lockerbie caught fire.
A spokesman said: “The fire was in the engine compartment but had been extinguished when we arrived. No-one was injured.”