Josh and Jade Cropper

An heroic Southport man has spoken about how he forced his way into a burning house to rescue five terrified dogs which were trapped inside. 

Josh Cropper, 29, then  leapt over the fence to extinguish the blaze before it destroyed the building and spread to nearby homes. 

The father-of-three, who has sons aged 3, 6 and 8, was at home at around 6pm last night when he spotted smoke and went to investigate. 

Josh, who is a grab driver for JN Civils in Preston, said: “We had just had our tea last night and my little lad was cleaning the dishes afterwards. I went to get some money to thank him and I spotted the black smoke. 

“I thought it might have been coming from the scrapyard but I was curious so I went to have a look. 

“We live in Pitt Street but the fire was on Milton Street, just a couple of hundred yards away. 

“When I arrived a house was on fire. There were people standing outside, but some of them were on their phones taking pictures of it. 

“A neighbour told me there were no people inside but there were five Yorkshire Terrier dogs trapped who couldn’t get out. My adrenaline kicked in.

“I opened the gate and kicked the front door in. As soon as I kicked that in, a big plume of black smoke came flying out. 

“I put a brick through a window to let some more of the smoke out. 

The scene of the blaze on Milton Street in Southport

The scene of the blaze on Milton Street in Southport

“A neighbour kindly took in three of the dogs, but two of them ran off. 

“The fire started in the carport next to the house. I am not sure what caused it. Maybe it was something electrical. 

“I climbed over a neighbour’s wall to get to the carport area and used a hosepipe to put out the fire. 

“The flames were out by the time the fire engines arrived. 

“I was worried about what might have happened. If the fire had spread it could have completely destroyed the house, and then spread to neighbouring properties, which would have been catastrophic. 

The scene of the blaze on Milton Street in Southport

The scene of the blaze on Milton Street in Southport

“The couple who were living in the house came back. They were Polish. The wife didn’t understand English very well and thought her dogs were still inside the building. She was hysterical, as you would be.” 

Josh was relieved he happened to be in the right place at the right time. 

A dog lover himself, Josh and wife, Jade, have a German Shepherd at home. 

He said: “When I pulled up outside, no-one was really doing anything. 

“I had to do something to help. 

“I always believe in good karma.” 

The scene of the blaze on Milton Street in Southport

Merseyside Fire and Rescue said three fire engines were sent to the scene at 6.03pm. On arrival, firefighters found the ground floor of the two storey house involved in the fire and heavily smoke logged.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service said it is believed the fire started in the back yard and spread from there to the house.

A fire service spokesperson said: “Four firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the property with two hose reel jets. The fire had been extinguished by 6.17pm.

“No persons were involved in the fire, however five dogs had been released from the property prior to MFRS arriving. It is believed the fire started in the rear yard of the property and spread to the property.

“Fire crews left the scene at 6.51pm, with the incident handed over to Merseyside Police.” 

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1 Comment
  1. Suzanne Rawsthorne 2 weeks ago

    So good to read this,a selfless act and quick reaction a good person you restore faith in humanity….a hero right there!

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