Hailsham boy walks miles for fire victims

Sean Eaton walked nine miles
Sean Eaton walked nine miles

A kind-hearted 11-year-old boy has walked nine miles to raise money for families left homeless after lightning struck a block of flats in Hailsham and sparked a blaze.

When Sean Eaton from Hailsham heard about the fire, he decided to take action and help those who had lost everything.

He went about planning the nine mile walk and on Sunday (October 19) was joined by his mum Teresa and his sisters for the trek to raise funds for families affected by the fire.

They walked the Cuckoo Trail, starting at Hailsham fire station and ending at Heathfield fire station.

Members of the fire brigade even came out to support Sean.

Deputy Town Mayor Cllr Amanda O’ Rawe has also congratulated Sean for completing the challenge and was at the event to cheer him on, on Sunday.

Other Hailsham town councillors and staff have also rallied around to help the families affected by the fire by sponsoring Sean.

Sean has now raised more than £500 for the families from sponsorship.

The fire started when lightning struck the building and sparked a blaze, severely damaging the top floor flat at The Diplocks. Residents were evacuated after the blaze caused water and smoke damage to several other flats.

Two good samaritans Sarah Louise Savill and Ema Verrecchia set up a Facebook page for people to donate furniture, items, clothes and food to help people affected by the fire. The items are being given to the six families who lost their belongings in the fire. Residents believe it could be weeks before the families can move back into the building, which is owned by Home Group.

Scott Black, Home Group director of customer service, said: “The majority of our customers were able to return to their homes within a few days of the fire. Six customers who were in flats most badly damaged will not be able to return until repairs are completed. Damage to their homes was extensive, including damage to a roof. These customers are being found alternative accommodation with the local authority. We’re continuing to stay in contact with all customers and offer them support.”

Around 30 to 35 firefighters were on the scene battling the blaze when it broke out three weeks ago. Firefighters entered the property using breathing apparatus and tackled the blaze. Crews remained at the scene throughout the night damping down and checking for any hotspots. If you would like to donate visit Facebook and search for donate clothes and household stuff for those in the Diplocks fire.