Former snooker hall destroyed in blaze

A FORMER snooker club was gutted by fire in the early hours of this morning after a massive blaze took hold.

Roddy Ashworth

A FORMER snooker club was gutted by fire in the early hours of this morning after a massive blaze took hold.

And yesterday police - who were forced to close Hythe Quay, leading to traffic delays today - said they were treating the fire as suspected arson.

The club - Mr Pools, at the Hythe, in Colchester - was reported alight at around 2.15am and two fire crews were sent to the scene.


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But before long firefighters realised further help would be needed to control the blaze and eventually seven fire engines were sent to the derelict property.

The three storey building - which measured around 40 metres by 20 metres - was described as “100 per cent” alight by 3.15am and fire officers inside the former club, who were battling the flames using hose reels and special breathing apparatus, were withdrawn.

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Work then began not only to put the main blaze out but also to try and stop the fire spreading to other nearby buildings.

An aerial ladder platform - a special fire engine with the ability to fight fires from above - was used to douse the flames and at around 6.40am four crews were called in to damp down the premises.

A police spokesman said: “A joint police and fire investigation has begun following a fire in Colchester.

“Police were contacted by the fire and rescue service shortly after 2.30am this morning following reports of a blaze at a derelict building on Hythe quay.

“Officers arrived and put in place a road closure to allow the fire service to handle the incident safely.

“In addition, the building was declared unsafe and is likely to be demolished.”

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