Pupils evacuated after fire breaks out at King's Bruton school
Pupils and staff were evacuated from a Somerset boarding school after a fire broke out in the early hours of this morning.
Firefighters from Castle Cary and Wincanton were called to the blaze in a shower room at King's Bruton shortly after 1am this morning.
All residents were evacuated safely before crews got to work extinguishing the blaze and clearing the smoke-logged premises using a ventilation fan.
Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service officials returned to the school this morning to investigate the cause of the blaze, which was ruled to have been accidental and started in a waste paper bin.
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Head teacher Ian Wilmshurst paid tribute to housemaster Malcolm Jeffery's bravery in a statement on the school's website today.
Mr Wilmshurst said: "Malcolm Jeffrey was first on the scene and his quick thinking and, indeed, bravery in using a fire extinguisher on the blaze undoubtedly prevented a more serious incident.
"I would like to express my thanks to Malcolm for his outstanding response to the fire, to all the staff in Old House for ensuring the evacuation was exemplary, and to the boys for their maturity throughout this incident.
"I cannot praise the Wincanton and Castle Cary fire crews who attended highly enough.
"We will need to fully refurbish the shower block but I am relieved that the result of the fire was not more serious.
"Our fire safety systems worked impressively although we will review them in light of what happened last night."