A HOUSE that became famous because of a giant dinosaur in the garden has been damaged by a fire that could have proved fatal had an autistic nine-year-old boy not spotted the danger.

When Thomas Adams smelled smoke in the house in Five Locks Road, Cwmbran, at around 10am last Sunday, he ran downstairs to tell his dad, John Fossil.

Mr Fossil had put the log burner on in the house because it was “absolutely Baltic that morning”, said Thomas's mother Becky Adams.

No smoke was visible from the living room, but when Mr Fossil looked into Thomas’ room he could see the smoke and everyone rushed from the house.

Directly above the log burner are the bedrooms of brothers Thomas, Dylan, 10, and Michael, 14.

“If it wasn’t for Thomas, they would be dead,” said Samantha Adams, Becky Adams's sister, and daughter of Jeremy Adams, the man who installed the 15 feet high plastic dinosaur in the garden last winter, after buying it in a charity auction from Dan-yr-Ogof Caves.

“Tom is a little superstar, and we are very lucky they are fine.”

Just three months ago, hundreds from the community paid their respects to Jeremy Adams after he died following a heart attack.

His dinosaur, which still dominates the front garden, had attracted national headlines.

“This quarter of the year hasn’t been great,” said Samantha Adams.

Family members and friends are all pitching in to help clear the debris and restore the home.

“They are all grafters,” she said

“We are a pretty positive family, if we get knocked down, we will come back up.

“My dad was a positive person and he would’ve said, ‘Don’t worry, nobody’s harmed’.

“The community have been amazing. I am really overwhelmed by how many people cared.”

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The hope is that the family will be able to get back into the house for Christmas Eve.

But they now face having to stump up the money it will cost to rebuild the living room and two bedrooms, because the house’s insurance was in Mr Adams’ name.

“We couldn’t get the right information to reset the direct debit,” said Samantha Adams.

“(The insurers) are now saying that because he died, they are not liable.”

After the fire crew had put out the fire, they ripped away the wall façade and discovered that the log burner’s flue - the pipe that sends smoke out of the house - had not been properly insulated and was perilously close to the wooden floorboards.

The family was told the flue should not be within a 60-centimetre radius of anything combustible, but it was half an inch from the floorboards. According to the fire crew, the smouldering started in the flue and spread to the boards.

A fundraising page has been set up here

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