Crews Tackle Homebase Fire for 42 Hours

It's after a fire broke out at 12.42pm on Saturday on the Aylesford Retail Park.

Kent Fire and Rescue have told Heart firefighting operations have now finished at the store after a major blaze broke out, destroying the building.

A mechanical digger was brought in last night to demolish some unstable parts of the structure at Mill Road, enabling firefighters to access the last remaining hotspots. Crews left the scene shortly before 7am this morning (3 May) although further checks will be made throughout the day.

At the height of the fire 90 firefighters were needed, using 17 fire engines, two height vehicles and a number of support units.

No-one was hurt in the incident and crews managed to prevent the fire from spreading to adjoining stores, although Carpetright suffered smoke damage.

The cause of the blaze is being treated as suspicious and Kent Police is investigating. Anyone with any information can contact officers on 01622 690 690. Alternatively contact Kent Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Detective Chief Inspector Jon Clayden said: 'Members of staff should be commended for their swift actions in evacuating the store.  Had this not been the case, the outcome could have been very different.  The fire has caused extensive damage and the building is at this time structurally unsafe.

'Anyone who may have seen anything around the time of the incident should contact officers immediately.'

Officers are also investigating an incident yesterday at a B&Q store in Larkfield. Members of staff extinguished a small fire in within the store at just after 1:15pm.

DCI Clayden continued: 'It is too early to say if these incidents are linked.  We are continuing our investigations to establish the cause of the fire at Homebase and part of that investigation will be to determine if there is a link between these incidents.'

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