Investigation under way into cause of fire

Investigation underway into cause of blaze in derelict houses in Essex

AN investigation has been launched into the cause of a major blaze at a range of derelict houses in Essex.

The roof in the affected area partially collapsed when fire broke at just after 5.30pm in the Old Officers' Mess, Shoeburyness, near Southend.

Ten crews were called to the scene where the roofs and first floors of a series of derelict houses were 80% alight.

Last night, crews were still at the scene, damping down and checking for hotspots.

A joint investigation by the Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and Essex police into the cause of the blaze is now underway.