‘Neighbours tried to save fire victim’

The house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye
The house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye

The man who died in a house fire in Armagh last night (Friday) has been named locally as Barry Toal.

It is understood Mr Toal (55) lived at the terraced house in Culdee Drive with his partner and two grown-up sons.

The rear of the house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye

The rear of the house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye

Garath Keating, Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, arrived at the scene after the fire had been extinguished.

He said, “As far as I understand, two people were rescued from the house by neighbours who then tried to get back in to rescue Mr Toal.

“They got a ladder and tried to break the upstairs window.

“The two people were taken to a neighbour’s house and were in a traumatised state.”

The house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye

The house in the Culdee Drive area of Armagh. Photo: Press Eye

He added, “It is a terrible tragedy. I would commend the quick response of the emergency services who stopped the fire spreading to other properties and of the neighbours who helped.

“As a community we will be doing all we can to help the family at this time.”

The fire was reported to police just after 8.30pm.

Around 30 firefighters tackled the blaze which group commander Mark Smyth described as “very intense”.

He said investigations are ongoing to establish the cause of the blaze.