Words by Erdington Local editorial team – pics from West Midlands Fire Service
The bravery and generosity of the Kingstanding community has shone through following the tragic house explosion last night.
And within hours, donations for the families in the houses destroyed or damaged began pouring in and a JustGiving page fundraising page started.
One woman died during the gas explosion; she is believed to be a pensioner who lived in the destroyed house. A man is being treated in Queen Elizabeth Hospital for serious injuries and another four people were treated for minor injuries at the scene.
One house was totally destroyed, three were seriously damaged, and several cars were hit by flying debris. West Midlands Fire Service confirmed 21 people were evacuated from their homes, some stayed with family members and others were found emergency accommodation.
Several people were taken to the Kingstanding Inn, Warren Farm Road.
“We currently have TCI with us which is a local community charity, and have housed those in need overnight.
“Should anyone need clothing, food, or just somewhere safe to chat, please pop in anytime. One thing this has shown is how our community can pull together.”
Young father Callum Attwood raced into the home to save a stricken resident, but after being praised as a hero by the national media wanted to set the record straight this afternoon.
He said: “I don’t want no credit for any of this there was another 10-15 lads in the garden helping and doing much more. I don’t want no credit for this.”
However, despite his modesty Callum and his fellow rescuers have been hailed heroes by thousands of people of social media.
Kiara Parkinson said: “People can say what they like about Kingstanding but when it comes to it we’re some bloody good people, Callum Attwood and anybody else who put themselves at risk running into a house that’s literally burning to help others in these horrific circumstances should be so proud of themselves.”
Kingstanding resident Sam Wellings, who lives on Birdbrook Road, set up a Go Fund Me page to help the ‘immediate victims of the Kingstanding house explosion.’ At the time of writing the page had received nearly £800 in donations.
He said: “Such an unpredicted accident which will leave many temporarily homeless.
“The money will be donated directly to the immediate victims to cover costs of temporary accommodation, clothing, food and anything else needed in such a tragic time.
“I don’t personally know those affected by the tragedy but as a resident of Kingstanding also I feel the community can support those affected.
Two young girls have been left “with just the clothes on their back” and Claire Deleon is also collecting donations for those in need and has already organised a charity night at Second City, Kingstanding Circle.
She said: “We are doing a collection of anything you have or can donate food, baby supplies, blankets, anything you can think of that can help the family’s out effected from the fire.
“Come on people let’s all pull together as a community, anybody can drop stuff into Second City and just let a member of staff know it’s for the collection, we will also be doing a charity day/night Friday with a live singer, there will be a collection pot, football cards etc on the day and night so please come and join us.”
The club are also donating 50p of every drink sold on Friday 1 July to help support that affected by the blast.
For more on Second City Sports Bar and Lounge visit www.facebook.com/secondcitybar.lounge
For more on the GoFundMe ‘Kingstanding house explosion’ campaign visit: www.gofundme.com/f/kingstanding-house-explosion