A COUPLE have told how their camper van break in a field near Dursley was rocked by a sudden explosion as a nearby motorhome blew up.

Pauline Jeffrey and her husband booked a night away for her birthday on a campsite in North Nibley.

Pauline Jeffrey said: “We parked up, and over the course of the evening two other camper vans parked up. We settled down, had some food, some wine, and watched the sunset, and were in bed by eleven.

“I woke up a little later to a beeping sound. We couldn’t work out where it was coming from but figured it wasn’t inside our van so we went back to sleep.

"Then we were woken up by a massive boom, and the sky went orange.

"We shot up out of bed and saw one of the vans engulfed in thirty foot flames.

“Completely panicked and shaken, I called 999.

"I didn’t know if anyone was in the van, and it continued to explode and burn."

“The call operator asked me where I was, and I couldn’t tell her. I had no idea. She asked for the postcode, and again, I didn’t know.

"I kept thinking, how do I explain how to get to this field that’s in the middle of where?"

Then Pauline remembered the what3words app on her phone.

The app has broken the entire globe up into three-metre squares and given each square a unique three-word identifier, making finding things easy.

“Using the app I told her our location, which was ///magnetic.manager.pocketed, and she was able to locate us right away.

“The fire crew and police arrived in ten minutes. But we still didn’t know if there was anyone in the van.

"It was ten past midnight, we were in a tiny village, where on earth would they be other than in bed?

“The fire crew pulled apart what was left of the wreckage and thankfully there was no one in there.

"About half an hour later the couple came strolling into the field, they’d been at the local pub.

"They’d only had their van for two weeks.

“It was so lucky that the van was empty.”

A spokesperson for Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service said: “We were called at 11.47pm on Saturday, July 17 to reports of a caravan on fire at The Street, North Nibley.

"Crews from Wotton under Edge, Dursley and Nailsworth attended the incident and used two hose reels, four breathing apparatus and a thermal imaging camera to extinguish the fire and make sure no-one was inside the vehicle.

"The crews left the scene at 1.31am.”