Firefighters leave Crewe retirement complex five days after blaze

Written by on August 13, 2019

Firefighters have left the scene of a retirement complex which was destroyed by fire, five days after it broke out.

One hundred and twenty three residents were saved from the Beechmere residential apartments in Crewe when the fire took hold on Thursday.

On Tuesday, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service said its operation had ended and neighbouring roads reopened.

It also means residents from two neighbouring streets are allowed to return home.

Nine properties in Royce Close and Railton Avenue were also evacuated while crews tackled the blaze.

The residents had previously only been allowed to return for 20 minutes on Sunday to collect essential items.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Gus O’Rourke thanked residents for their “patience and co-operation”.

Investigations are ongoing into how the blaze, which is believed to have started in the roof, was able to spread so rapidly, but it is not thought to be arson.

Crews worked through the weekend to damp down the site, where much of the building collapsed.

Of those residents evacuated from Beechmere, some were temporarily placed in nearby care homes while others stayed with family members.

Mark Palethorpe from Cheshire East Council, said 13 residents were now in permanent extra care accommodation and its focus was to support residents into longer term homes as soon as possible.

Hazel Faddes, a carer and also a Labour councillor for Crewe East, said: “The enormity of it hadn’t occurred to them that first evening.

“The second day they were very subdued… and some people still haven’t come to terms with the fact that they have lost all their belongings.

“They are missing their friends, they are missing the community they had.”

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