Tangmere Co-op and One Stop shop give away food to gas leak evacuees

Police cordon of Tangmere street after gas main is ruptured. Picture by David Thompson
Police cordon of Tangmere street after gas main is ruptured. Picture by David Thompson
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BOTH Tangmere’s community stores have been hailed by residents forced to evacuate their homes after a gas leak.

The village’s Co-op store and One Stop both told villagers evacuated from their homes around 4.15pm (October 7) to help themselves to food and drinks from the shelves when they had to take shelter in the village centre.

Miller Homes' site, where the main was ruptured

Miller Homes' site, where the main was ruptured

“I won’t say it was an excellent night, it was different but the community here in Tangmere really came together last night,” said Jem Ballantyne, who was evacuated from his home in Woodfield Close

“All the services were superb and I can’t praise the two shops enough.”

He said he would be going around later today (October 8) to thank them both for their generosity.

“They really were superb. We felt like we were shoplifting. They said ‘take whatever you need’.

Mr Ballantyne also praised community wardens Dawn White and Gareth Jones, saying they were ‘absolutely superb and kept us informed all the time’.

Duty sergeant David Lyons, of the Chichester neighbourhood policing team, also came in for praise from residents for keeping them informed and for helping them during the evening.

When residents returned home at 5am, Mr Ballantyne said: “Two policemen and all the gas people were still here working. We made them cups of tea and bacon sandwiches. It was a real community spirit. Everybody pulled together.”

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