Stoke-on-Trent pub drinkers abandon pints to smash way into burning flat – but thankfully no-one was inside


Drinkers inside a Stoke-on-Trent pub abandoned their pints after a huge fire broke out in a neighbouring flat.

A member of the bar staff and one of the punters sprung into action after a passerby ran inside The Barrel in Tunstall to raise the alarm.

They dashed to a nearby building on Tower Square as smoke billowed out of the roof above a dog grooming shop.

Once there, they smashed the glass in a desperate bid to get in amid fears the occupier was trapped inside.

But they were beaten back by the flames before firefighters arrived on the scene a short time later.

It later transpired that the householder had been out but a firefighter suffered minor injuries.

Emergency services at the scene

Craig Bourne was among those enjoying a Saturday night in The Barrel when he was alerted to the blaze shortly before 7pm on Saturday (September 5).

The 59-year-old, from Tunstall, said: “We were in the pub and we noticed the smoke. The Oddfellow Arms has a coal fire so we thought it was that at first.

“But then someone pulled up outside and on the square and came running in saying there was a fire.

“We all went running out and could see huge amounts of smoke coming from the roof. There was a few of us by that point.

“A barman and one of the men who had been in the pub kicked the entry door through. They went to the metal steps at the back and the door handle was warm so he put his elbow through the glass and shouted ‘is anyone there?’.

A cordon in place in Tower Square, Tunstall

“One of the girls from Bargain Booze knows the chap who lives there and she was really worried that he was stuck inside.

“But the smoke was that thick you couldn’t even see one foot in front of you.

“Thankfully no-one was in at the time. If they had been, they wouldn’t have made it out alive. All the glass was exploding with the heat.

“Four fire engines then arrived with two police cars, an ambulance and paramedic car.

“A cordon was put in place around the pub while they tackled the fire. They were here for hours. Later on a gas man came.

“After all the drama it turned out to be quite a quiet night in the pub as everyone thought the it was closed because of the tape. We all needed a drink after that.”

Police and paramedics in Tower Square, Tunstall

An investigation later revealed the fire had started accidentally but the cause has not been revealed.

If you’re on the lookout for local news, we have you covered with our FREE email newsletter – sign up in the box at the top of this story or click here.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We were called by the fire service at 6.55pm to reports of a flat fire.

“One ambulance and a paramedic officer attended the scene.

“There were no persons inside the property at the time. But one person, a firefighter, was taken to a walk-in centre for minor injuries.”

A Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: “We sent four pumps to the scene after receiving a call at 6.51pm.

“A fire had started in a flat above a shop. It is believed to be accidental ignition.”





Source link

Leave a Reply

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