beechmere fire 6

Cheshire Fire investigators are now probing the cause of the blaze which ripped through the Beechmere residential complex in Crewe.

Early indications suggest it was not a deliberate act, and the focus will be as much on how the fire spread so quickly and with devastating effect.

The fire broke out shortly after 4.30pm on Thursday (August 8).

Around 150 people were evacuated from the building and at its height, 16 fire engines were in attendance to tackle the blaze.

CFRS Head of Protection Lee Shears said: “It is clearly still very early days in our investigation, but what we do know is that the fire started in the roof area and spread rapidly.

“It appears, at this stage, to not have been a deliberate act.

“Establishing the cause is our first priority and I’m confident we will conclude this soon – what will take more time is understanding how the fire took hold in the way that it did.

“Fortunately, there is still a section of the building that remains intact, and that could be crucial in helping us to figure out what went wrong here.

“From speaking to the incident commander first at the scene, it’s clear the fire wasn’t behaving in the way we would expect, and I must praise his swift and decisive actions in ordering the immediate evacuation of residents.

“His decision undoubtedly saved lives.”

That decision cancelled a “stay put” policy at the premises, which would have required residents to remain in their apartments and be evacuated on a phased basis.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Gus O’Rourke added: “Such policies are commonplace and a recognised methodology in buildings that are designed to support them.

“Thankfully, the incident commander recognised the immediate danger and was able to override it.

“I must also praise the staff at Beechmere and neighbouring residents.

“They were immense in supporting the evacuation process that evening and should be truly proud of themselves.

“The support from residents and the wider community of Crewe continues to be an inspiration to us all, and I can’t thank them enough for their generosity, patience and understanding during this incident.”

Crews have worked alongside a specialist building team to spread the remaining material out to help with the damping down process, and will return again on Monday to continue.

Firefighters remained at the scene today (Sunday) to monitor the situation and cool hotspots.

Colleagues from Cheshire Police have been stationed at the cordon throughout the weekend which remains in place at the scene on Rolls Avenue.

Some residents from neighbouring properties were evacuated and have been displaced throughout the weekend.

Residents and relatives with enquiries about social care and accommodation can still call Cheshire East Council’s 24-hour helpline on 0300 123 5025.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website, to learn more please read our privacy policy.


Captcha * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.