Investigations underway at Lowestoft pub blaze

INVESTIGATIONS are underway after firefighters tackled the second blaze at a Lowestoft pub and hotel within the space of five days.

More than 30 firefighters were called to the Sun Rise Inn, in Corton Road, close to the seafront, at about 6.15am after a fire broke out in the roof of the three-storey building.

A Suffolk fire service spokesman said the roof had partially collapsed, and a neighouring hotel was being evacuated as a precaution.

Four crews from Lowestoft, the hydraulic platform and support pump from Great Yarmouth, and the command support vehicle from Beccles were all in attendance with four jets, and two hose reels in use.

With the aerial appliance used to 'strip tiles,' the blaze was fought externally, with fire investigations in progress.

Paul Field, station manager, told The Journal: 'Four appliances from Lowestoft and the aerial support crew from Great Yarmouth were called out at 6.15am, and on arrival the fire was well developed in the roof area.

'It is too early to say at this time the area where the fire may have started, as there has been a partial collapse of the roof and it is too dangerous to deal with internally, so we are fighting the fire externally.'

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Station manager Field added that the 'vast majority' of the building had been saved. 'We are making good progress in the area,' he said. 'We don't believe that that there was anyone inside the building but we did have to evacuate a neighouring hotel as a precaution.

'We did have a fire here previously, but it is too early to say the cause and what happened - there will be a full investigation,' he added.

The fire crews are likely to remain at the scene today 'for some considerable time' due to the roof collapse, and fire investigators were also due at the site.

Police were also called to the scene, with Corton Road remaining closed at the junction of Yarmouth Road and Lyndhurst Road.

The fire is the second at the property this week.

On Sunday, fire crews spent about two hours putting a blaze in a first floor flat at the hotel, after being called to the scene at 1am.

The cause of this blaze was not believed to be suspicious and is thought to have been caused by an electrical fault, but police were called in after fire crews noticed signs of forced entry at the rear of the building.

A Suffolk police spokesman said the matter was being treated as a burglary, although it appears nothing was stolen.

Last month, the freehold of the Sun Rise Inn - which has been run as a 12-bedroom hotel, pub and restaurant - was sold for �200,000 at an auction in London.

• Anyone with information on Sunday's fire should contact PC 592 Andrzejewski at Lowestoft on 01986 835300.