A family has been left devastated after being driven out of their home by a fire, the latest blow following the death of dad David Wilson three months ago.

Mum Caitlin, and her three young children, aged four, two and five months had a lucky escape from the fire, which was caused by an electrical fault, and has left their home at Brompton, near Northallerton extensively damaged.

Friends have rallied round and they have been offered an alternative home while repair work is carried out, but they have few belongings left because of the fire and smoke damage. A fundraising page has been set up to try and help them, so they can at least move into the other property.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Caitlin and her family managed to escape the house

Caitlin said: “I’m just absolutely devastated, having lost Dave and then losing the house, but I am determined to look after my babies, they are the most important thing. I didn’t want the crowdfunding page set up, I don’t want charity, but my friend Karen has been an absolute angel to me and the kids. She took us into her home after the fire and says people want to help.

Darlington and Stockton Times: The fire in Caitlin's home was caused by an electrical fault

“I honestly don’t know what I would have done without her, she has been there since Dave died, and has kept me going through the most terrible time, she has been wonderful.”

Caitlin, 25, has already been targeted on social media by trolls. “You just wouldn’t believe some people said horrible things, it is so upsetting, but then so many people have left really nice messages and support and we really do appreciate that,” added Caitlin.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said the fire which swept through the house was started by an electrical fault. It is thought it was in a freezer.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Caitlin and David with their children

The family have been trying to recover from the death of dad Dave, 46, in August. Caitlin said his death came totally out of the blue. He had not been feeling well but didn’t want to go to hospital. The next morning she had to call an ambulance and carried out CPR with ambulance crews also helping but he did not recover. He died from coronary heart disease.

Caitlin said: “He was such a lovely strong man, I can’t believe he has gone, we had plans for our family and for ourselves. Suddenly everything changes and I have to carry on without him.

“It is heartbreaking but I know he would want me to carry on and look after the children. They are such beautiful kids, they miss him, and it is going to be very hard, especially after the fire but we have to go on.”

The crowdfunding page which has been set up to help Caitlin and the children is at https://www.gofundme.com/f/8r877-a-family-in-need?.

Messages of support and information about any items that might be a help for the family to set up home again can also be left there.