STAFF extinguished flames after a fire broke out in a time capsule at York’s Jorvik Viking Centre - but a mum caught in the drama said her children were left “traumatised”.

Sarah Barclay, 39, was visiting the city with her children Ivy, seven, Solomon, 11 and Jemima, 12, as well as her sister Kate McClurg, 36 and four-year-old nephew Elwood McClurg, when the fire broke out.

She said a cable - used to transport visitors in time capsules - caused sparks that hit her sister’s arm and nephew’s face.

“Our cart seemed to stop and there was darkness for a few minutes, which can feel like a long time in that situation,” she said. “We then saw members of staff look stunned and run in the other direction to get a fire extinguisher.

“It wasn’t until a civilian stood up and shouted ‘you’re on fire, get out’ that we removed ourselves from the cart as the barrier didn’t go up. The whole car seemed to be in default, so we had to clamber out as calmly as possible.

“My four-year-old nephew and seven-year old-daughter were upset and traumatised, they are still talking about it and I’m not sure how they will behave if they ever go on another ride again.

“Even after the incident, they continued to let people in.”

Mrs Barclay, who lives in Australia but is originally from Stockton-on-Tees, said her group was given a refund.

“I asked to see the manager but it took him an age to come and see me,” she said.

“He said the children could have £10 each for the gift shop but I’m appalled. I’m angry at the staff for not caring, that there was no follow-up phone call or care, and that they kept the museum running that day.”

However, Jorvik Viking Centre said the incident, on July 6, was dealt with within 80 seconds.

A spokesman said: “There was a minor incident in which a very small fire resulted from an electrical fault on one of our time capsules at the end of our ride experience. The ride stopped automatically when the fault was detected, and the fire was extinguished within 80 seconds by a member of the technical support team.

“The fire was very localised, so small and dealt with so quickly that neither smoke nor fire alarms were triggered. All of our safety procedures operated correctly, all visitors on the ride were evacuated promptly and without injury, and safety checks continued until the centre re-opened the following morning.

“The family in the time capsule involved disembarked before staff could guide them off the car.

“A parent of one of the children reported a small red mark under the child’s eye but declined a cold compress or any first aid.

“The duty manager offered the family some vouchers as a gesture of goodwill, which they spent in the shop.

“As is usual in incidents like this, we requested a contact number for the family, but they declined to provide one.

“We aim for all of our visitors to have the best experience at Jorvik Viking Centre, and we’re sorry that this technical problem disrupted their visit.

“We are in contact with the family and our insurers to resolve this issue to their satisfaction.”

Jorvik reopened in 2017 after a two-year refurbishment which included the new attraction ride.