A children's nurse has been left with life-changing injuries after a portable heater exploded in a pub beer garden.
Ashleigh Charlesworth, 27, suffered severe burns to her face, chest and hands in the explosion at the Kings Head pub in Great Cornard, Suffolk.
She was rushed to Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, Essex - where there is a specialist burns unit - and was on a ventilator for two days.
Two other people, including Ashleigh's cousin, were also injured in the blast, which is believed to have happened after a customer brought the heater to the pub.
Suffolk Police have launched an investigation into the circumstances leading up to the horrific incident.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
Ashleigh worked as a paediatric nurse at Colchester Hospital, Essex, before moving to Virgin Care, and had recently helped deliver Covid vaccinations.
Children's nurse Ashleigh Charlesworth (pictured) has been left with potentially life-changing injuries after a portable heater brought by a customer exploded at the King's Head pub, Suffolk
The 27-year-old had been on a night out with her cousin at the time the explosion took place.
She has needed a skin graft on her hands, and has to wear a special face mask to help heal her facial burns and prevent potential infection.
Her father Paul Charlesworth said: 'Someone brought a heater to the pub but it exploded and Ashleigh and her cousin got sprayed in the face.
'They were badly burned and taken to hospital. Ashleigh was put on a ventilator for two days and needed operations on her hands.
'The doctors are trying their hardest not to do anything to her face as they hope the skin can heal itself.
'She's having to wear a special mask on her face still as these types of burns can carry on damaging skin for days.'
Paul, 55, from Colchester, said it is too early to tell what degree burns Ashleigh has suffered following the incident on April 24.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
He said: 'She is in extreme pain and needs to have her skin chemically cleaned. What's happened has only sunk in for Ashleigh over the last couple of days.
Ashleigh, 27, (pictured) suffered severe burns to her face, chest and hands in the explosion
'It's so unfortunate as she is such a hero who does so much for the NHS.'
Ashleigh's sister Stacey added that it is too soon to know whether Ashleigh might need surgery on her face.
Stacey added: 'She has quite deep burns along the left side of her face and around her