Homes evacuated as firefighters tackle massive blaze at tower block

More than 40 homes were evacuated as crews from more than 10 fire stations tackled a massive blaze at the nine-floor Strachan & Henshaw block in Foundry Lane, Speedwell, which began yesterday evening.

People reported hearing explosions and the fire was seen for miles around.

Several roads were closed overnight including most of Deep Pit Rd, Brook Road, Whitewood Road, Oak Lane, Foundry Lane, Fern Hurst Rd, Oak Lane, Holly Lodge Road and part of Whitefield Road.

A number of properties were evacuated – 15 on Deep Pit Road, eight on Fernhurst Road, two on Mallard Close and 19 properties on Whitefield Road. Those evacuated who didn’t have a place to go were invited to take refuge at St John’s Church on Lodge Causeway.

This morning the incident is said to be under control and most residents have been allowed to return to their homes although some fire-fighting operations are ongoing and the trading estate remains completely closed to all businesses.

Avon Fire & Rescue Service’s Chief Fire Office Mick Crennell posted these photos this morning and praised the fantastic multi-agency teamwork involved in dealing with the major incident.

Crews from Kingswood fire station, who were the first on the scene, called it “one of the hardest and longest nights ever”.

There was a fire at the same premises on New Year’s Eve, the cause of which was believed to be accidental.