Neighbours rally to help 97-year-old who had tree blown in front of house by Storm Doris

Mary Peak outside her home, where the large fallen tree has blocked off her path with handrails
Mary Peak outside her home, where the large fallen tree has blocked off her path with handrails

A 97-year-old woman is hoping that a tree that fell in front of her house in Storm Doris can be cleared - so that she can make it to the bingo on time tomorrow.

A large crab apple tree fell with a thud in front of Mary Peak’s house in Myrtle Bank, Stacey Bushes just after 3pm yesterday during the howling winds of the storm.

Neighbours Scott Fitzgerald and Maureen Smith helped Mary

Neighbours Scott Fitzgerald and Maureen Smith helped Mary

But Mary, and her son James, have been left heart warmed by the help from Mary’s neighbours, who managed to clear a route for her to get into the home before she arrived home from her regular bingo sessions at The Point.

The large tree has blocked off the steps down that Mary uses to get into her home, which have hand rails to help support her.

The new route down towards next door and across the front porch can help James and neighbours get to the house, but the lack of hand rails has left fiercely independent Mary unable to leave her home on her own until the tree is cleared.

Mary told the Citizen: “When I got back I just thought ‘my god’. I couldn’t see my house, my garden or my stairs.”

Neighbours including Scott Fitzgerald and Maureen Smith rallied to clear a way for Mary before she got home.

Scott said: “We heard an almighty thud and thought it had landed on one of the cars. It was about twenty minutes before the school run. The branches were blocking the other entrance, so a few of us neighbours helped clear it.”

And Maureen said: “I’ve lived here for 12 years and I absolutely love Mary. I’m so glad she wasn’t here when it fell.”

Mary’s son James added: “Mum has been here since this house was built in the 70s, and she knows all the neighbours.

“You see a lot of negativity around and I just loved the story that all the neighbours came together for her. They worked together to get her through to the house at the side because it hasn’t got any handrails.

“She can’t get up there without them so hopefully MK Council can come out soon.

“I called them again this morning and they said they had had a lot of calls like this. I explained my mother’s situation and they said they would make it a priority.”

For Mary though, she just wants it fixed so that she can take the community bus to the bingo tomorrow, as the game ‘keeps her mind going’.

Speaking about the help she received from her neighbours, Mary said: “It was a great feeling knowing that they were all there for me.”

A Milton Keynes Council spokesman said: "We've had more than 70 fallen trees in the borough since yesterday, so we are working to get them as soon as we can.

"We would ask people to be patient as these were extreme weather conditions."