England

Queen's Birthday Honours: Bosley fire fundraiser recognised

Bosley explosion site Image copyright Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service
Image caption The fire started with a sound like a 'big bomb'

A fundraiser who helped a community after four people died in a mill fire has been made an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours.

Sylvia Jenkinson lost one of her closest friends in the explosion at Wood Treatment Ltd plant in Bosley, Cheshire, in 2015.

She said the whole community rallied to help the families of those left behind.

Dorothy Bailey, William Barks, Derek Moore and Jason Shingler all died in the huge explosion.

Her friend Dorothy would have been thrilled by the reaction, she said.

Image caption Sylvia Jenkinson has helped raise more than £200,00 for people affected by the disaster

Mrs Bailey, 62, would not have believed the amount of love that flowed towards her after her death, Ms Jenkinson said.

"She would have been really, really happy to realise what people thought about her."

On the day of the fire, Ms Jenkinson had been on her way to a nearby school for a leavers service when she heard a sound like a "big bomb".

She realised the extent of the fire straight away, she said.

She had known most of the people involved in the fire, as had most of the people living nearby, and the fundraising started straight away with everybody joining in.

Image caption Will Barks, Derek Moore, Jason Shingler and Dorothy Bailey all died in the fire at the mill

More than £230,000 was raised.

"I feel like I am accepting this award on behalf of Bosley," she said.

She had been absolutely shocked when the envelope with news of the honour arrived, she added.

"I felt thrilled, nervous, humble, privileged - the lot," she said.

"I could not concentrate on anything I was supposed to be doing."

The investigation into the fire continues.

Image caption The explosion took place at Bosley, between Macclesfield and Congleton in Cheshire

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