News: Inquest reveals what caused fire that killed mother and her two children days before Christmas

News: Inquest reveals what caused fire that killed mother and her two children days before Christmas

Another Lincolnshire Highlights news story…

A mother and her two children were killed in a fire that started in a chilly conservatory which was draped in Christmas decorations, an inquest has heard.

Justine Collison, 32, and her two children, Isabella, eight, and five-year-old Harvey died after a tragic house fire at their property in Collingham, near Newark, on December 10, 2018.

An inquest hearing was told that the fire started due to an electrical fault – but it is unclear which item caused the flames to start.

 

A neighbour raised the alarm about the fire at 7am that morning after she smelled smoke in the street.

However, the flames were too intense for the villagers to make attempts to save them.

 

It is thought that the flames took 20 minutes to develop in the conservatory.

One part-time fire crew arrived on the scene within six minutes of the first report.

Husband and father Gavin Collison survived the blaze possibly because he collapsed and fell to floor of his bedroom, which left him in the cooler air and away from the flames.

Tributes have been left at the scene of the house in Collingham
Tributes have been left at the scene of the house in Collingham
(Image: Lincolnshire Live)

His wife died in bed, while the two children were found in their bedrooms. They both died later in Queen’s Medical Centre.

The hearing was told that both of the children’s bedroom doors were usually left open in case they woke up and wanted to talk to their parents.

Nottinghamshire senior coroner Mairin Casey recorded the deaths as accidental.

Helen Richardson, headteacher at John Blow Primary School in the village, issued a statement on behalf of the school community in the aftermath of the tragedy.

The statement said: “As many of you must now be aware, we lost two of our pupils through tragic circumstances at the weekend.

“Izzy and Harvey Collison sadly lost their lives, alongside their mum, Justine, in a house fire on Saturday morning.

“Their dad, Gavin, is still in a serious condition in hospital and our thoughts go out to him and the rest of the family at this difficult time.

“Izzy was a gentle and caring girl who will be deeply missed by all who knew her.

“She adored her younger brother Harvey, frequently asking at playtime if she and a friend could go and check if he was settling into school.

“Held in high regard by the rest of her class, Izzy was quiet and unassuming, but this did not stop her from putting her all into everything she did.

“She enjoyed music, dance and drama which enabled her to express her sense of fun and the creative side of her personality.

“Harvey had only recently joined our school, starting in our reception class. He was very creative, always making models in the craft corner.

“He was always kind and caring: only last week he made a handbag out of cardboard boxes for his mum, because she was always mislaying her phone. Harvey was a lovely, friendly child, and he will be very much missed by us all.

“It has been a privilege to know and share in Izzy and Harvey’s lives, so unexpectedly cut short and they will remain with warm fondness in our hearts forever.”

Police at the scene after a devastating house fire in Collingham near Lincoln
Police at the scene after a devastating house fire in Collingham near Lincoln
(Image: Lincolnshire Live)

   



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