Grenfell firefighters offered free breaks in the Yorkshire Dales

The upper floors of Grenfell Tower. Photo: ChiralJon.

Firefighters involved in the rescue operation at the Grenfell Tower disaster have been offered free breaks in the Yorkshire Dales to help them recuperate.

Owners of B&Bs, holiday cottages, bunkbarns, hostels and guest houses have offered free accommodation to the firefighters affected by the tragedy which claimed the lives of at least 79 people.

The offers followed an appeal by Susan Briggs, who runs the Masham-based marketing company The Tourism Network.

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She put out an appeal online and emailed accommodation providers immediately after the disaster, and said the response had been immediate and very generous.

Around 120 breaks have been offered in total with providers in Richmond, Wensleydale, Swaledale and Bishopdale all coming forward.

She said in the appeal: “We know it’s their job, but it seems that they’re going beyond the line of duty.

“Funds have been set up for victims of all these horrific incidents but what about the emergency services?

“It’s only a small gesture but I know that when the world seems like a scary place and the news is dark, many of us feel better after spending time outdoors surrounded by beauty.

“It would be good to able to share the peace, tranquillity and restorative powers of our wonderful places with those who really need them.”

​Diane Howarth, from the award-winning Cottage in the Dales in Newbiggin in Bishopdale was one of those who replied.

She said: “We would be delighted to offer 2 short breaks – a 3 night weekend or a 4 night midweek, free of charge. Our cottages sleep 2 or 4 and won best in Yorkshire last year and one cottage is also the best in England this year, so quite appropriate for the best heroes in England.

“We’d be honoured to welcome them.”

Other offers came in from around the UK, with somebody even offering a stay in their gite in the south of France.

In total, around 120 breaks have been donated.

Susan received this response to the appeal from The Fire Fighters Charity: “We are currently co-ordinating a plan to offer support to the members of the fire community following the terrible fire at Grenfell.

“This is a fantastic offer and could definitely be of benefit to those involved, as we would be able to use it alongside our own recuperation services. Thank you so much for your support.