A family home was close to being engulfed in flames after a weed burner exploded nearby.

Natalie Crouch rushed to the side of her bungalow after being told by a neighbour that it was ‘partially on fire’.

She said: “I dumped the car and just ran down to see the side of the house in flames and all the firefighters."

As a result of the fire, Natalie’s car was completely written off and her windows and roofing were damaged along with the shrubbery by her house.

She said: “It was very scary, but luckily, it was almost out as I was getting there and the firefighters were great, they came in and checked over everything.”

Natalie’s home in Ringwood, where she lives with her husband and two-year-old daughter, is located just a few feet away from a set of council-owned allotments.

Daily Echo: Natalie with her husband and daughterNatalie with her husband and daughter (Image: Natalie Crouch)

According to Natalie, the cause of the fire was a weed burner that had blown up there.

She added: “Someone had shaken the canister, and it engulfed the hedge and the whole thing went up in seconds.

“Our neighbour saw the hedge going up in flames.

“She shut the window and screamed to get out of the house.

“[One neighbour] is bedbound so it could have been a catastrophic tragedy.”

Daily Echo: The shrubbery between Natalie's house and the allotmentsThe shrubbery between Natalie's house and the allotments (Image: Natalie Crouch)

Now, Natalie is campaigning for better legislation for allotments, and encouraging others to check their agreements.

She said: “We want assurance this isn't going to happen again because our boundary is a couple of feet away from where the plots start.

“I'd like the plots moved, ideally, so it's within a safe distance.

“I also want them to get their insurance sorted because anything could happen to anyone, and I just want to make people aware that it happens.

“If you live near a site like this, you might want to check what measures are being put in place to protect you and your family.”

A spokesperson for DWFRS said: “At 10:30am on January 30, a crew from Ringwood was called to a small fire in the open at allotments on Southampton Road in Ringwood."