Picture Past: Burnham ablaze and Cheddar growing pains

PUBLISHED: 11:00 22 February 2020

Sunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland.        Picture: WESTON MERCURY

Sunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

Archant

Councillors in Cheddar said the village needed to be able to grow after new population caps were proposed by the Weston settlement policy.

The second of the parties organised by the Locking Citizens Club for the children of the village was held at the new hall. About 80 children sat down to tea, followed by games, competitions and dancing.     Picture: WESTON MERCURYThe second of the parties organised by the Locking Citizens Club for the children of the village was held at the new hall. About 80 children sat down to tea, followed by games, competitions and dancing. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

Speaking at a special parish council meeting to discuss the 4,000-person population ceiling for the settlement, Cllr Norman Heal argued: "It is obvious Cheddar is the most important settlement in the Cheddar Valley.

"We are too big to be called a village and too small to be called a town.

"We are falling between two stools. If we can increase our population, we can attract bigger stores and light industry. Cheddar is not big enough to encourage these sorts of people.

"We ought to be allowed to develop and grow bigger."

The first new British car of the Seventies was announced this week, the Hillman Avenger was on show at Victoria Garage Weston-super-Mare. Our picture shows Mr R Hoder (managing director of Victoria Garage) with staff and guests, and The first new British car of the Seventies was announced this week, the Hillman Avenger was on show at Victoria Garage Weston-super-Mare. Our picture shows Mr R Hoder (managing director of Victoria Garage) with staff and guests, and "Avenger Girls" Elaine Slocombe and Jean Goodwin. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

The councillors agreed to ask for a larger population level with more development eastwards towards Draycott.

The council would also like to see a piece of land in the area of the old railway station set aside for industrial development.

Cheddar, they agreed, could also have a recreation centre based on the Kings of Wessex School.

A travelling shop containing more than £100 worth of groceries, was taken from where it was parked in Langford Road, Weston.

The Worle Secondary School Table Tennis team of Roger Wade, Kenneth Ede, Malcolm Gingell, Andrea Beetson, Jeci Henderson and John Pratlett, with Jayne Hiscocks (in play) who performed very well at the South West Schools Table Tennis Championships.     Picture: WESTON MERCURYThe Worle Secondary School Table Tennis team of Roger Wade, Kenneth Ede, Malcolm Gingell, Andrea Beetson, Jeci Henderson and John Pratlett, with Jayne Hiscocks (in play) who performed very well at the South West Schools Table Tennis Championships. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

The Morris diesel van was later found in a quarry in Uphill.

Only about £10 worth of the groceries were still in the van.

A home in Burnham was said to be like a furnace after the wooden casing of a boiler flue pipe in an outhouse caught light and fire spread throughout the £15,000 property.

At the height of the blaze fought by crews from Weston, Burnham and Bridgwater, flames leaped 50ft above the house.

Sunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland.        Picture: WESTON MERCURYSunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

About four-fifths of the roof was destroyed or damaged and there was severe damage to the first floor of the Victorian-style home.

Hours after the fire started, firefighters were still on the scene dealing with smouldering timbers and clearing the first-floor debris,

The owner, who had only lived in the house for seven months, said he was alone when the fire broke out.

He said he had heard a crackling sound and when he opened the door to the former servants' quarters, he found the roof ablaze.

Sunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland.        Picture: WESTON MERCURYSunday afternoon's scene on slopes above Burrington Coombe. There was no snow in Weston, but by contrast the Mendips were a winter fairyland. Picture: WESTON MERCURY

He then called the fire brigade and rushed outside. A neighbour said: "The place was like a furnace."

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