Upminster fire ruins refurbished shop

PUBLISHED: 12:00 21 March 2015

Flames could be seen above the building. Picture: David Stainer

Flames could be seen above the building. Picture: David Stainer

The huge blaze that ripped through a maisonette caused the newly-refurbished shop underneath to be destroyed by water damage as firefighters tackled the flames.

Prestige Bedrooms after the fire in the maisonette abovePrestige Bedrooms after the fire in the maisonette above

Thirteen people were forced to evacuate their homes after flames engulfed a flat in Station Road, Upminster, at about 9.20pm on Sunday.

Residents of neighbouring flats fled in case the fire spread.

Crews finally got the fire under control at about 1.40am, but the amount of water used to fight it meant Prestige Bedrooms, the store underneath, was destroyed.

To make matters worse, the owner had just spent thousands refurbishing it.

A worker told the Recorder: “We’ve just done it up and now it is completely devastated. We’ve spent about £50,000 on it and now it is ruined. It’s all a bit of a shock.”

The fire was captured on camera by onlooker Alexander Lee, whose video shows flames erupting above the building.

It took 35 firefighters in six engines about four hours to tackle the huge fire, which destroyed part of the second floor.

The roof was also damaged and crews carried out salvage work in neighbouring shops and properties.

Firefighters from Romford, Hornchurch, Dagenham, Barking and Harold Hill attended. There were no injuries. It is the second large fire in one month in Upminster, after tool hire shop Hares Hires was gutted on February 16.

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