Investigation Into Fire At Derelict Cinema In Southend

An investigation has started into a fire at the old New Empire cinema in Southend.

Six fire crews and around 30 firefighters were called to Alexandra Street at 7.51am yesterday

Essex Fire and Rescue Service say "Firefighters have been called to a fire in a derelict building measuring 50m x 50m.

"The incident commander reports that  the roof is 25 percent alight. Crews are using one hose reel jet and one main jet to fight the fire.

"Firefighters are using one hose reel jet, two main jets and an aerial ladder platform to tackle the fire.

"A large amount of smoke has been generated by the fire so we are advising nearby residents to close their windows."

Fire crews got the fire under control after several hours and at around 1.20pm said they were damping down.

Incident Commander, DO Danny Bruin said: "Firefighters worked in ardeous conditions to contain the fire to the roof and mezzanine floor of the building.

"The crews hard work stopped the fire from spreading to neighbouring properties.

"Three fire appliances and the aerial ladder platform remain at the scene to extinguish remaining hot spots. "

The cause of the fire is unknown.

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