Norfolk

Fire guts Attleborough's Breckland Lodge pub and hotel

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Media captionAttleborough Breckland Lodge fire: Drone captures hotel devastation

More than 70 firefighters have tackled a blaze that broke out at a hotel and pub off the A11 in Norfolk.

Fourteen fire engines were called to Breckland Lodge in Attleborough after the alarm was raised at 09:20 GMT.

A plume of smoke could be seen for miles, with pictures posted on social media showing thick black smoke rising from the building.

Norfolk fire service said crews would remain at the scene for several hours to damp down the site.

Image copyright Niall Ray
Image caption Eyewitness Niall Ray said a pillar of smoke could be seen for miles ahead as he approached the A11 landmark

A spokesman for the East of England Ambulance Service Trust said no-one had been hurt.

It is not yet known how the blaze started.

The site of Breckland Lodge consists of a hotel, pub, restaurant and coffee lounge in separate buildings.

Image caption More than 70 firefighters attended the blaze
Image caption Crews attended the blaze from across Norfolk

Its management said on Facebook it had a "large fire in the restaurant and bar, which is being tackled by an army of firefighters".

In a further update, they wrote it was a "very sad day", adding the "fire has taken hold of our restaurant and coffee lounge and the damage is severe".

They also said any restaurant and hotel bookings had been cancelled and it would contact those affected as soon as possible.

Incident commander Paul Seaman, of Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: "Unfortunately, Breckland Lodge will be closed for some time.

"It is a tragic loss for the area and hopefully we will see it being rebuilt for the future."

Image caption Breckland Lodge said its restaurant had suffered "severe" damage
Image caption The blaze spread into the roof space after the alarm was raised at about 09:20 GMT

A stretch of London Road, next to the scene, has been closed but the A11 was open, Norfolk police said.

Eyewitness Niall Ray, 21, from Horsford, near Norwich, photographed the scene from his passenger seat.

"You could see the smoke for miles ahead," he said.

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