A 80-year-old man is in hospital in a life-threatening condition following a fire at his home in Springfield Gardens, Ilkeston.
Crews attended the scene at 9.10pm last night after a neighbour spotted smoke coming from the house.
The man has been named locally as Brian Wheatley, who lives alone and is immobile. He is believed to originally be from Awsworth and use to be landlord at The Derby Arms.
Charlotte Walker, 22, who lives across the road from the house called 999 after hearing the smoke alarm going off and seeing black smoke coming from the front window. She said neighbours put the blaze out with a hosepipe.
She told the Advertiser: “I was coming back from a having a meal with my boyfriend when we heard the alarm. The bottom window was open and we saw black smoke coming out. We opened the door and saw the flames. My boyfriend Jack called 999 and asked for all three emergency services.
“A neighbour then pulled up in a car and came to help. We opened the door even more and saw the flames. He was sitting in a chair in the living room. The people living next door to him got a hosepipe out and opened the window inside the house.”
A spokesman for Derbyshire Police said the man has suffered serious burns and is being treated at the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham.
The fire was not believed to be suspicious and an investigation is set to begin.