Stoke & Staffordshire

Warehouse fire in Etruria 'was accidental'

Twyford building fire scene
Image caption The fire has cost businesses thousands of pounds

A fire which destroyed a warehouse in Stoke-on-Trent and affected about 30 businesses was accidental, the fire service has said.

Crews spent the weekend at the former Twyfords factory in Etruria, where the fire started on 28 December.

Staffordshire Fire Service said investigators found the cause of the blaze in Garner Street was accidental.

Police said they were working with the fire service to establish exactly how it started.

About 80 firefighters were at the scene of the fire at its height.

'Livelihood's gone'

Creative Vision Photography and IT firm Complete ICT were among those businesses affected.

Mark Mason, owner of Creative Vision Photography, said it would cost him at least £15,000 to replace damaged equipment.

He said: "I'm just gobsmacked. Gutted. The whole livelihood's gone.

"And my partner, her business is there as well so that's the two of us - main incomes just gone."

Tim Shufflebotham, from Complete ICT which employs three other people, said he would have to wait for a report from his insurance company before deciding on the company's future.

"All our computers are gone, mobile phones, iPads, we've got insurance for it all but it's how long we will have to wait for a payout," he said.

"As a small business we haven't got the capital to start straight up again, so we just need to know how long the insurance company are going to take."

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