Hartlepool arson attack victims tell how they had to flee for their lives

Jaifar and Becky Trigwell in the living room of their fire-damaged home in Troutpool Close.
Jaifar and Becky Trigwell in the living room of their fire-damaged home in Troutpool Close.

The victims of a suspected arson attack have spoken for the first time about how they were forced to run for their lives with their five-year-old blind son.

Young couple Becky and Jaifar Trigwell, 32, have been left devastated after a fire tore through their home on Troutpool Close, Hartlepool, in the early hours.

Becky, 25, had been watching TV around 3am when she smelled smoke and alerted her husband to the blaze.

The couple then raced from the fire with their blind son Ryden, five.

They also managed to save the family pets, three dogs and four cats, but 
have been left with nothing but the clothes on their backs after the fire destroyed nearly all of their possessions.

Police are investigating the blaze and arrested a woman on suspicion of arson.

“Everything is smoke and fire-damaged,” Becky said.

“We now have a permanent residence, if we want it, in the town centre but you want to pick your own home, and it’s too small for the family.

“We’d only just moved in to our home seven weeks ago when this happened. I am a full-time carer for Ryden, who is registered blind and has suspected autism.

“I am angry that they did it when we have a kid in the house. The garden is full of his toys so you can’t walk in the garden and not know there is a kid. If I was asleep at the time, we might not have been able to get out alive as I smelled the smoke.”

The family escaped with their lives but now have to deal with the aftermath of the fire, which destroyed their home.

Cleveland Police have confirmed that a 39-year-old woman from the Hartlepool area, who was arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life earlier, has been bailed pending further inquiries.

They said they are still treating the incident as a suspected arson.

The unemployed couple are now hoping the community will rally around to donate much-needed items such as clothing, food and toys as they attempt to rebuild their lives.

“We need stuff for Ryden such as clothing for five 
to six-year-olds and leads and collars for the dogs, which were hanging up where the fire was started,” Becky said.

“Ryden had a new bike, which was destroyed, it was brand new as he had only got it for his birthday a month before.”

Becky’s mum Anne Brooker, who has just opened shop Mystic Magik, in Murray Street, is hoping members of the public will drop donations off at the store or donate online to a Just Giving Page.

So far, the page has raised £215 of the £400 target.