Young family 'cooped up' in hotel room after flat fire in city
- Credit: Contributed
A single mother and her four kids have been crammed into a hotel room after their flat was destroyed by flames on New Year's Eve.
Roxanne Sidney, 26, has been staying in the Holiday Inn next to Norwich City's stadium after her Suffolk Square council-property was gutted by a kitchen fire.
The fire service is continuing to carry out investigations as well as attending to the smoke damage after crews were called out just after 2pm on Friday, December 31.
But Miss Sidney bemoaned having to stay in a cramped hotel room - which is costing the council up to £200 a night - with little cooking facilities to provide healthy food for her children aged nine, six, two and six-months-old.
She said: "I struggle with depressions and anxiety anyway so being cooped up in this small bedroom is not healthy.
"It's really affecting my children with schooling and we are struggling at the moment.
"My kids are quite traumatised after seeing a fire in their own home."
The family was told the fire may have been caused by a tumble dryer, but Miss Sidney disputes this as she believes it was turned off.
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A neighbour alerted the fire service as Miss Sidney and her children were out at the time.
The family's French Bulldog Cleo was inside the burning building but was rescued by the crews.
Miss Sidney said: "Our kitchen was completely destroyed. I was originally told I would have to pay for all the damage but then got another another phone call saying I did not have to pay. It seems a bit strange.
"I would be prepared to be rehoused anywhere in Norwich. I just need to get out of the hotel room."
Miss Sidney has been told she will not be charged for the repairs and the council provided a new microwave for Miss Sidney to use at the hotel.
A council spokeswoman said: "The work to repair fire damage at Miss Sidney’s home is almost complete.
“Since the fire, we have taken care of all of the family’s needs, which includes providing accommodation and covering food costs.
“We are in regular contact with Miss Sidney and she’ll be the first to know when it is safe to return to her home.”