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Young family too scared to go home after arson attack inches from flat

PUBLISHED: 14:34 01 September 2020 | UPDATED: 14:34 01 September 2020

The fire was right next to the home of Jodie Adams-Womack and her family. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.

The fire was right next to the home of Jodie Adams-Womack and her family. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.

Jodie Adams-Womack

A young couple with a two-year-old son say they are frightened to go home after an arsonist set a fire that blazed inches from their flat.

Emergency services attend the fire in Berners Close. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.Emergency services attend the fire in Berners Close. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.

Jodie Adams-Womack has appealed to Norwich City Council to help find a new place to live after the blaze was the latest in a string of issues at their ground floor home in a block of flats in Berners Close, Mile Cross.

Mrs Adams-Womack said the police had carried out drugs raids on nearby properties, while she had twice found pills in communal areas.

She, her husband Martyn, 28, and son Jack, two, are staying with her mother after a shed outside their flat was torched in the early hours of Sunday, August 23.

Norfolk police confirmed they were treating the fire as arson and Mrs Adams-Womack said: “I am scared and I do not want to go back there. This was just the latest thing to have happened there since we moved there in February last year and we just can’t put up with any more.”

The fire was right next to the home of Jodie Adams-Womack and her family. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.The fire was right next to the home of Jodie Adams-Womack and her family. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.

The family fled the flat at about 1.20am, after the shed just outside their back window was set alight.

While the damage to their flat was confined to the outside, Mrs Adams-Womack said it followed drug raids in nearby homes and her pill finds - which she had reported to City Hall and police.

She said: “The council says that, because we have a ground floor flat and a garden we are considered low need, but they know what is going on here and they let us live here with our young son.”

She said, despite her efforts, the council had not responded to her concerns since the fire.

Police are probing the arson attack on the shed in Berners Close. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.Police are probing the arson attack on the shed in Berners Close. Pic: Jodie Adams-Womack.

A Norwich City Council spokesman said: “We are sorry to hear that Ms Adams-Womack is experiencing anti-social behaviour. The council has a strong record in dealing with anti-social behaviour, and robust procedures are in place to allow us to take proportionate actions where necessary. If any of our tenants or residents are aware of criminal activity such as drug misuse, they must report this to the police.

“We want to ensure Ms Adams-Womack and her family feel safe and secure in their current accommodation, as we will not allow any of our residents to be forced from their homes by the actions of others.”

Norfolk police said anyone with information should call 101.


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