'We’re just overwhelmed': Fundraiser set up for grandparents who had their motor home destroyed in a blaze reaches £1,000 target

An online fundraiser aimed at recovering some of the cost of a retired couple’s motor home after it was destroyed in an arson attack outside their Hetton home.

Saturday, 24th April 2021, 7:00 am

Retired grandparents Geoffrey and Carol Bowden, both 77-years-old from Hetton, have been left devastated after their motor home was subjected to an arson attack at around 11pm on Saturday, April 17.

Emergency services attended the scene on Lambton Drive after being alerted to the incident and found that the fire had spread from the motor home to the house, causing extensive damage.

Their granddaughter, Dionne Talbot, set up a Go Fund Me page to help her grandparents cover some of the costs of the damage, with the £1,000 target surpassed within four days.

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Couple 'overwhelmed' after fundraiser set up after their motor home was destroyed in a blaze reaches £1,000 target

Geoffrey has told the Echo about how the couple felt when they found out that the target amount had been reached.

He said: “We’re just overwhelmed, we didn’t think that we would have gotten anywhere near that amount, it just shows that there is so many good people in world, more good than bad.

"If they had attempted to steal it, you could maybe try and understand it but to just set fire to it, it makes no sense.”

Geoffrey and Carol Bowden were looking forward to getting back on the road after lockdown restrictions eased.

In pre-Covid times, the couple would usually spend around six months of the year away from home, regularly travelling to the Isle of Wight and Spain.

Now they are looking to replace the motor home in an effort to get back out on the road as soon as possible, with the excess proceeds from the fundraiser going to both the police and fire brigade as a thank you from the couple.

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Geoffrey added: “We’ve been down to Catterick and Darlington and up to Team Valley pricing up a replacement however we are wanting like for like and it is proving hard to find.

The couple are now looking around to try and replace their motor home.

"Some of the things we have lost were bought in motor home shows or abroad and they aren’t necessarily found in shops.

"Everything apart from the memories has been lost, we still have them – just not the things to go along with them.”

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