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Chronicle helps local DJ escape from war-torn Beirut

An Essex DJ is on her way home after being caught up in the Israeli bombing of Beirut, thanks to the Essex Chronicle.

Staff at the paper got a vital messsage through, telling her where to rendezvous for rescue.

Jolie Boyle travelled to the Lebanon to play a DJ set almost two weeks ago, but was forced to take shelter as Israeli bombs rained down near her hotel.

The 28-year-old had been waiting to hear when she would be evacuated from the war-torn region and kept in constant contact with the Chronicle and BBC headquarters in the devastated city.

When the paper saw an alert from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office advising travellers to reach a rendezvous point in the city by 3pm Beirut time, its reporting team managed to get a message to Jolie – who reached the meeting point with just minutes to spare.

As the Chronicle went to press Jolie was boarding HMS Gloucester, one of the Royal Navy ships ferrying evacuees on an escape route to Cyprus.

She said: “What can I say, I can’t thank the Chronicle enough.

“I got to the rendezvous point and just walked through, they signed me in and checked my bags and put me on the bus to leave.”

Jolie should have jetted home to play London superclub Ministry of Sound a week ago, but the conflict escalated and she found herself stranded as the only Briton in her hotel.

She said: “I was really scared in the beginning, especially when a communications tower 200-300 yards from my hotel was bombed.

“I heard the bombs coming down, you just hear the noise they make, one then another one and another one.

“I was at a wedding reception while I was out here, they had to change the venue to the rooftop of a hotel and we could see orange flashes where the bombs were dropping.”

Jolie is now hoping to get to Cyprus, where British people are being evacuated, and catch a flight to visit her patrents in Spain.