Huge blaze at former day care centre

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WIGAN fire crews spent hours tackling an “out of control” blaze at a former day care centre.

At around 8.30pm on Wednesday emergency services attended reports of a building fire at The Pines Hostel on Mayfield Road in Orrell.

Firefighters tackle the blaze at The Pines on Mayfield Road, Kitt Green. Pic by Nick Fairhurst

Firefighters tackle the blaze at The Pines on Mayfield Road, Kitt Green. Pic by Nick Fairhurst

Firefighters from all of the borough’s stations raced to the scene to find a blaze at the single storey derelict building that was well alight.

It was initially unsafe for crews to enter and with a high wind made it harder to put out the flames. And it was feared the fire would spread through to nearby buildings.

Station Manager Geoff Thornley said: “There was a lot of smoke in the immediate area initially but as soon as we got water onto the fire the smoke turned to steam and dissipated.

“The building was the former Pines Hostel – it was under demolition and the fire involved a single story annexe, which was well alight.

The building was the former Pines Hostel – it was under demolition and the fire involved a single story annexe, which was well alight

Station Manager Geoff Thornley

“Initially we had four fire engines and an aerial platform at the incident but this was soon reduced to three engines and later to two crews, who remained there overnight.”

Thursday morning fire crew remained at the scene whilst digging out of the site got underway.

They left the scene at around 8am when the building was handed over to a demolition company.

A joint investigation with the fire service and police has now launched to establish the cause of the blaze.

The Pines was a former hostel for people with learning difficulties. But it was forced to close in 2013 when a report from the Care Quality Commission that stated that the hostel had failed to meet required care standards.

It is currently in the process of being demolished.