Man arrested over Broadstairs flats blaze as fundraiser to help family left with nothing continues

Suspected arson attack in Fosters Avenue Photo @BooGibbens

A man has been arrested on suspicion of arson following a blaze in St Peter’s earlier this month that devastated four flats.

Kent Fire & Rescue Service was called to the flats in Fosters Avenue just after midnight on February 13 following what was described by onlookers as “an explosion.”

Seven fire engines and a height vehicle attended the blaze and battled for three hours to get the flames extinguished.

KFRS’ volunteer response team also attended and provided support to affected residents.

The fire service believed the fire started in the garden and spread to the roof space of the property.

One of the families who lost everything in the fire was Krista Pike, her two children aged 10 and 7 and  her partner Samuel Jordan.

Krista is currently staying with her mum who lives close by but the flats have been declared structurally unsafe, meaning the family now has to wait to be rehoused by Thanet council.

Krista’s sister  Donna Lawry-Johns said the family were left with just the nightclothes they were wearing as the fled the building.

Donna, who is a main carer for Krista who is autistic, said: “We haven’t been able to salvage anything. When they came out of the building the kids were in their PJs with no shoes and socks and my sister was also in pyjamas, that’s all they had.

“If it wasn’t for her partner Samuel they probably wouldn’t be here now.

“He heard a strange noise so went into the kitchen and the glass in the window just cracked and he could see all the flames outside.

“He ran the other way and grabbed my sister, then got Bella (daughter) out of the top bunk and gave her to my sister. Then he got Finlay, grabbed the dog and took them all outside. He then went back inside and got the parrot.

“It was all just chaos after that. The kids and my sister were taken to a house while my mum was alerted and I was in Folkestone so packed and came home.”

Donna says the Salvation Army kindly paid for some clothing from Primark for the family, the CT10 charities has also helped and she has had to buy mattresses and extra duvets so the family has something to sleep on at her mum’s house.

She added: “They have nothing so my son wanted to set up a fundraiser, which my daughter-in-law did, and we are just trying to get some money for them so they can get the things they need. People have kindly donated bits as well.

“My sister is very dependent on me so we are hoping the council will get her somewhere close by as none of this is her fault.”

Find the fundraiser for Krista here

A fundraiser has also been set up for the neighbouring family where the mum and children lost all their belongings. That fundraiser can be found here


Kent Police say a 32-year-old man was arrested in connection with the fire.

A Kent Police spokesperson said: “Kent Police is investigating a fire at a block of flats in Fosters Avenue, Broadstairs, shortly before 12.30am on Monday 13 February.

“A 32-year-old man from Margate was arrested later that morning on suspicion of arson and released on bail.

“Enquiries into the incident are ongoing.”


  1. How awful for the family especially the children. Last year we were At Centaparcs and a family of 5 who live in the area of Elvenden were staying at the site after their home was damaged by fire the local authority are paying centaparcs until their home ready to move back in.

  2. it’s awful but have a double slated bed and wardrobe n other stuff if they still need it I have emailed the fundraiser I have no money to donate wish I did

  3. This was not the only family involved in this awful fire. Other people lost everything too. Its been devestating. I hope everyone gets rehomed soon.

  4. It might be worth asking for stuff through Freegle. People are often willing to donate stuff they no longer need.

  5. The person who had just moved in with her carer the day before had just admired her new carpets and furnishings before she went to bed . They only survived because they received a phone call saying that the flat was on fire. Both were fast asleep in bed. They too have lost all their worldly possessions. There needs to be a go fund me page that provides for all that have lost everything in the fire.
    I’m afraid this is not something I know how to do.

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