Bellshill blaze drama was started by resident who poured nail varnish remover on a carpet

A woman set fire to her Bellshill home because she was fed up living there and wanted the local authority to find her another house.

Hamilton Sheriff

Neighbours in the block of flats had to be evacuated as thick smoke engulfed the building in Glencalder Crescent -after a bottle of nail varnish remover was used as an accelerant .

Julie Stafford, 43, appeared at Hamilton Sheriff Court last week and admitted starting the fire on January 19 last year.

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The court heard it caused damage estimated at £10,000.

Jennifer McCabe, prosecuting, said: "The accused told two friends she was going to set fire to her home.

"She didn't want to live there anymore and she thought by doing this she would be moved somewhere else.

"She handed her friends two bags with belongings then poured two bottles of nail polish remover on the carpet and set it alight."

Stafford then called the fire service and waited outside for them to arrive.

A scene then ensued when the emergency services turned up and at one point, they even had to take action to prevent her her entering the burning house.

The fiscal added: "Police officers attended and saw she was visibly upset.

"She was screaming that there were pictures of sentimental value inside.

"Officers twice had to stop her as she tried to re-enter the building."

The front door and hallway were badly damaged.

It was also stressed there was "serious smoke damage" elsewhere in the block of flats.

Dismayed residents were kept outside for two hours while firemen made sure the building was safe -then allowed them back in.

Ms McCabe stated: "Stafford was treated as a witness at first.

"She claimed she'd received threats from a man who had said he would burn her house down.

"But she was later arrested and was found in possession of a lighter."

When charged with wilful fireraising, Stafford replied: "I never done it.

"I have lost everything."

Sheriff Linda Nicolson deferred sentence for a psychiatric report.

Stafford, now of Christie Street, Mossend, had her bail continued.