Return to FireNet News Index
This article was reproduced with the kind permission
of the British Broadcasting Corporation



Thursday, 22 November 2007, 17:59 GMT
Reality TV star dies in flat fire

A man who died in a flat fire in Dorset has been named as a former haulage boss who starred in a reality TV series.

Mike Furnell, 61, was featured in the show Pleasure Island at an adults-only Caribbean resort in 1999.

The fire at his flat in Wareham on Tuesday night is thought to have been started by a discarded cigarette, a fire service spokesman said.

Paramedics at the scene tried to resuscitate him but he later died at Poole Hospital.

Mr Furnell had been drinking in The Anglebury House before heading back to his flat.

'Sadly missed'

The bar's owner, Jane Spencer, said: "He was a very kind man, very caring and polite.

"He came in most days and had lunch and a few drinks and then went home. It was no different that day.

"He will be sadly missed by everybody."

Dorset Police said the fire was not being treated as suspicious and further tests were needed to establish the cause of death.

Mr Furnell, a former truck driver, became a partner in his father's haulage firm in Poole in the 1970s and also previously served on Purbeck Council as an independent.

He was one of the contestants of ITV series Pleasure Island at the Hedonism II resort in Jamaica, where guests and staff were encouraged to participate in adult games.