A COMMUNITY has rallied round a man who lost virtually everything in a devastating house fire.

Chris Pearson managed to escape the inferno when his Frizington home was engulfed by flames, but was injured when he ran back into the blaze to rescue his dogs.

One of his dogs died and three others were injured.

But tragedy has now turned to hope for the 46-year-old, as offers of help have flooded in to help care for the dogs and rebuild Mr Pearson's gutted home.

Everything was destroyed in his lounge, kitchen and down stairs bathroom and it took 17 firefighters to tackle the flames. There was also smoke damage throughout the house.

His niece Mary Pearson said: “The smoke was so dense he couldn’t find the dogs. He has burns on his neck and shoulders and was treated for smoke inhalation. He is pretty sore still but he's recovering physically.

“Mentally he is finding it more difficult. One of the dogs, Bow, a five-year-old whippet-lurcher cross died.”

Another dog Guinness suffered smoke inhalation, Gunner was burned on his head and back and Solo, a puppy burned paws.

The first act of generosity was from Animal Concern. The animals were rescue dogs and the charity has picked up the vets bill.

But that is just the start of the kind-hearted offers from the community, as the family has been overwhelmed by offers of help.

Mary said: “I persuaded my uncle to let me put something on social media. I said the worst that could happen would be that there was no response.

“We have been completely overwhelmed with offers of help.

“It’s nearly Christmas. People have got their own things to do and tradesmen could be working for money.

“We have a man coming to check the structure of the building for us. We have a plasterer, Roy Robson, who has offered his services for free and is urging others to join him."

AM Joinery has offered its services while there have been other offers of furnishings and so on.

Mary said at the moment her uncle is unsure what to do next.

“The house is boarded up and we can’t see inside because it is so dark," she said. "Once we know if the house is structurally sound we need windows to let the light in and doors to secure the house.”

Cumbria Fire and Rescue was called to the Lindow Street blaze at midday on Saturday. Four appliances and 17 firefighters attended and 10 sets of breathing apparatus were used by firefighters who rescued the dogs.

Anyone willing to help restore the house can contact Mary Pearson on her Facebook page.

She has also set up a just giving site: https://protect-eu.mimecast.com/s/vLhaCL7ppsA7y2juBPK6n