A CHELSEA man has described the panic and terror he felt after part of his roof collapsed unexpectedly on Saturday (27) afternoon.
Journalist Richard Compton Miller, was away for the weekend when he received a call from his neighbour saying there had been an ‘explosion’ at his house in Fernshaw Road.
Rushing back with his partner Nicola Muir, the couple arrived to find their home still standing but part of their roof missing and no explanation as to what had happened.
Mr Compton Miller, said: "Our neighbour rang and told us that there was a major incident outside the house and that my home had been destroyed. I was horrified. We got a train back as soon as possible.
"There were four ambulances and a police helicopter. The police were so worried about gas they smashed my ground floor window to get in and my neighbours too.
"I collect art and I was terrified that all my works of art would be destroyed."
The ornamental parapet that runs along the terraced houses in the West Brompton street had unexpectedly collapsed just before noon, causing debris to rain down on the ground.
During the incident it was thought that an explosion had caused the damage, and neighbouring properties were evacuated as a precaution.
Mr Compton Miller, said: "For some reason the parapet of my house had come down. There was no obvious reason why, no one had been up there putting pressure on it. Five houses were affected, mine was the worst.
"I have lived here since 1975 and I’ve never seen anything like this.
"It’s a mystery why this accident happened. There is one theory that a land mine went off in the wall. As a building down the road was bombed in the war."
No one was injured but officers from Kensington and Chelsea Council stayed in the area until 2am the next day.
Mr Compton Miller and Ms Muir were not allowed into their house during this time but claim the community spirit of their neighbours, which include British writer A.A. Gill and Duran Duran's Nick Rhodes, was a great relief to them.
Mr Compton Miller, said: "What was interesting, was how kind the neighbours were - people we had never met. There was a feeling of the blitz. People gave us drinks, invited us in and even offered beds for the night"
The accident has resulted in damage not only to the parapet but also the window which was smashed.
The cause of the collapse is currently under investigation.