THE LATE BUSH FIRE IN OTAGO.
The fire on the Peninsula on Fn'day (writes our Broad Bay correspondent) eeetns to have been more destructive than was at firat thought. Starting from the base of the Harbor Cone, near the beach'at Broad Bay, it extended up the hillside at the back of Larnach's Castle down to Hooper'a Inlet and over Sandymount to the ocean in an incredibly short space of time, spreading on its way over some thousauda of acres of land, chiefly cleared, but with stumps dead standing,' trees, post and rail and other bush fences, which served to feed its fell course. In many cases the men were from home at the time working at a distance, and the suddenness with which the fires appeared bewildered and almost paralysed the women and children. Children were hurried off to neighbors' houses, with " best clothes," &c, but only to find the danger there as great as the one they bad left. One boy went with his load from hou»8 to house for two miles before he found a place of safety, the fires keeping pace with him all the way. In one case the bewildered housewife, buried blankets and clothing, but in the hurry did not sufficiently cover them, and consequently they were totally destroyed. At one time the Sandymount School was in imminent" 'danger, and the children were.hurriedly dismissed to find their homes, if happily they were saved, in the best way they could through the blinding smoke. Besides the individual iossea,,a house of six or I eight rooms belonging to Mr W. Kid: | dell, was totally destroyed. During the destruction 'of the Harbor Cone Uheese factory, Captain Leslie* house, in close proximity to tlitFactory, .caught fire, and was with difficulty saved. Tbe Cheese Factory was insured1 irr the Norwich Union Company for £150. With this excep-, tion it doei not appear there were any
other insurance*, and the "loss therefore falls hetvilj on a number of hardworking; struggling settlers. , , ,_-
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