A PENSIONER and two young children had to flee a house after a chip pan fire in Nelson yesterday.

‘Enormous’ flames began shooting out of the window of the terrace house in Berriedale Road, Nelson, at around 12.30pm.

A total of 20 firefighters attended the incident, which caused significant damage to the property.

The resident, a Portuguese pensioner, thought to be in her 80s, was inside the house with her granddaughter, thought to be around 10 years old, and her friend, when the fire broke out.

A neighbour said: “I could smell the smoke and looked out of the back of my house and could see thick black smoke.

“The elderly woman inside and the two children came out and I called the fire service, but the woman kept trying to go back into the house to get things out.

“I think every room is pretty much wrecked inside, the flames at the back of the house were ferocious, they were enormous.

“I had just finished cleaning when the fire started and had all my windows open so my house ended up with quite a lot of smoke inside as well.”

Fire crews spent a couple of hours at the scene and it took them around half an hour to put the blaze out.

Watch manager Neil Hard-iman of Nelson Fire Service said: “A chip pan fire in a terrace house in Berriedale Road destroyed the kitchen at the property.

“The rest of the house was slightly damaged by smoke, as were the two houses either side.

“The sole resident, a female pensioner, was checked over by paramedics and did not require any treatment.

“She had left the property after the fire started and gone to a friend’s house. Two fire engines of ten firefighters attended, four of whom used breathing apparatus to go in an extinguish the fire.”