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22 March 2014, 06:36
Some families in Martham in Norfolk have spent the night in a community centre after a large fire at a farm.
Emergency services are still at the scene of what they are calling a 'significant fire'.
Police were alerted to the fire at a premises, believed to be a mushroom farm, off White Street at around 4.30pm today Friday 21 March 2014.
A 100 metre cordon is currently in place to allow firefighters to tackle the blaze.
Six fire appliances from stations around the county – including Acle, Gorleston, Stalham, North Walsham, Great Yarmouth and Hethersett – were initially called to the scene at 4.15pm.
Although the fire is believed to be under control, eight fire crews remain at the site as there are a number of gas canisters and asbestos sheeting inside the premises. Overnight, three to four fire crews will stay at the scene to keep a ‘watching brief’.
A number of properties, mainly in the Bradfield Drive area have been evacuated and a handful of residents are attending a temporary rest centre at the local community centre in Rollesby Road.
The evacuation is purely as a matter of precaution and it is hoped residents will be allowed to return to their properties later this evening.
Superintendent Stuart Gunn of Norfolk Constabulary, said: "We would like to thank the local community for the co-operation and patience they have shown while emergency services work to tackle the fire.
"We are working with the Fire Service and other agencies to ensure the fire is brought under control as soon as possible and to allow residents to return to their properties."
Group Manager James Belcher, of Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: "We would like to echo the sentiments of Norfolk Constabulary and thank the local community for their patience and understanding while we deal with the situation.
"We’d also like to thank Martham Parish Council for being so supportive and for helping local residents.”
Householders in the immediate vicinity who have not been evacuated are being advised to stay indoors and to close doors and windows.
Investigations are underway by police and fire officers to determine the circumstances surrounding the cause of the blaze.