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Mass goes ahead after fire destroys saint's statue
7:00am Saturday 5th October 2013 in News
A STATUE of a Catholic saint was found burning at a North Oxford church.
A priest discovered the statue of St Anthony of Padua ablaze inside the Oxford Oratory St Aloysius Church in Woodstock Road early on Wednesday morning. The blaze is believed to have been caused by a candle. Yet after the call at about 6.30am, firefighters managed to clear the thick smoke before morning mass at 7.30am.
Father Anton Webb said the four-foot statue, which dated back to the 1900s, had been ruined, but nothing else.
He said the priest who had discovered the fire had tried to put it out but had to call the fire brigade.
He said: “Unfortunately the statue is ruined. We are very grateful that nothing else was damaged.”
Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service spokesman Marcus Mabberley said a hose was used to put out the wooden statue and extractor fans were used to clear the smoke.
He said: “It is believed the fire was caused by an unattended candle.”
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