Red-faced former firefighter Ross Sheppard had to call the fire brigade out when his shed caught fire.

Mr Sheppard, 30, was burning cardboard and wood in an incinerator bin in his back garden when the flames spread to a wooden shed.

The shed caught fire when Mr Sheppard went indoors to attend to his six-week-old son, Louie, and his partner, Claire Fonteyne, 30.

The couple, who live in Awdry Road, Devizes, were alerted to the fire by the barking of their Jack Russell dog, Vinni, and Mr Sheppard quickly filled a bucket with water and threw it over the flames.

He refilled the bucket about six times and, as well as attempting to douse the flames, he threw water on to his second wooden shed next to the one on fire to stop it spreading.

He was unable to put out the fire but did stop it engulfing the other shed, although two perspex window panels in it melted.

Mr Sheppard, a window cleaner, said: “The flames were about ten feet high and the roof of the shed was well ablaze. The roof was gone so then it was a case of controlling it until the fire engine came.

“I probably could have put it out eventually but it was easier to call the fire brigade out. It could have caught neighbours’ sheds so potentially it could have been a lot worse.

“I went indoors to feed Louie and I got distracted. If I had stayed with the incinerator bin the shed wouldn’t have caught fire.”

The shed that was on fire was destroyed, along with a trampoline and two children’s bikes which were inside.

The couple’s two other children, Tommi, ten, and Corey, eight, watched from their bedroom as firemen put out the blaze on October 13.

Mr Sheppard was a retained fire fighter in Devizes for four years from 2000.

He was featured in a local news television programme which filmed him as a new recruit to the fire service and followed his progress through training.

He left the fire service when he moved from the town centre and could not give the same commitment.

Pip Flowers, commander of Devizes Fire Station, said: “While we were on the fire truck driving to the fire we said to each other that we thought it was near Ross’s house.

“Ross was a bit embarrassed about it and he had a fair bit of mickey taking from us. Joking aside Ross did everything right when he realised the shed was on fire. His actions in putting water on the second shed definitely saved it from going up in flames. He did well with what he had available to contain the fire.”