Sidmouth hotel blaze - investigations continue

Investigations continue into a Sidmouth hotel blaze on Saturday. Exmouth fire crews were among 75 firefighters from across the region to tackle the blaze.

Fire crews from Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton on Saturday night battled a huge inferno which left a derelict Sidmouth hotel in ruins.

More than 70 firefighters from across East Devon tackled the blaze which engulfed the main hotel building of the Fortfield Hotel.

Residents were urged to stay in their homes and roads were shut for hours after flames broke out at around 7pm.

Exmouth fire station group manager Mike White said specialist foam firefighting equipment, the incident command unit and two fire crews were tasked from Exmouth to the scene.

He said: “The foam was used to cover the thatch roof of the cricket pavilion to stop the fire spreading.

“The incident command unit was there as an operational centre for the whole command of the incident.”

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Watch Commander Andy Revesz said: “On arrival the building was well involved in fire on the top floor of the premises.

“The fire spread and involved all floors down to the ground in the main part of the building.”

Fire crews from Sidmouth, Ottery St Mary, Exeter Budleigh Salterton and Seaton, were called to the scene after reports the hotel was alight.

Crews requested further back up and firefighters from Exmouth and Honiton were drafted in.

The hose layer from Honiton, incident command unit from Exmouth, two aerial ladders and the water bowser from Exeter and compressed air foam appliance from Somerset also attended.

Fire crews remained on site throughout the night.

Saturday’s fire was the second at the hotel within a month. The latest blaze was thought to be suspicious and investigations continue.

Roads around and along Sidmouth seafront were shut as fire crews pumped water from the River Sid.