Nottingham cattle market: Trading resumes after 'fireworks blaze'

media captionDrone footage of Nottingham Cattle Market fire

Traders have returned to Nottingham's cattle market following a major fire that destroyed four business premises and damaged several more.

It is the first market since Sunday's blaze at the 132-year-old site.

Keith Butler, marketing manager for auctioneers Arthur Johnson and Sons, said they were "staying positive" and it would be "business as usual" for stall traders.

Three people were arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of arson.

'Charred, twisted metal'

The three - two men and one women - have since been released under investigation.

image copyrightArthur Johnson and Sons
image captionThe market is the first to take place on the site since the fire

Nottinghamshire Police said the fire had "involved fireworks".

Mr Butler said: "The south-west end of the site is pretty devastated but it's been fenced off so it is safe - we couldn't operate otherwise.

"There's lots of charred, twisted metal and the remnants of people's businesses.

image copyrightArthur Johnson and Sons
image captionSome traders lost their stock when storage units were destroyed

"Several buildings were completely burned out but the historical heart of the place is still there."

The Meadow Lane site includes Nottingham's market house, which opened in 1886, and the historical cattle house.

"Luckily, neither of those were affected by the fire," said Mr Butler.

He said he was expecting huge public support on Saturday.

image copyrightArthur Johnson and Sons
image captionThe 132-year-old market is "a real feature of Nottingham life"

"We usually get a few hundred [people] but we're expecting up to 2,000 people. It's a real feature of Nottingham life," he said.

Some market traders had their storage units destroyed.

Neil Artis, a flower trader for 10 years, said: "I've had to start again with fresh stock and am still going through negotiations with insurance.

"But it's no use sitting and crying - you have to carry on. I've had a lot of support from regulars, which has been really nice."

image copyrightArthur Johnson and Sons

Market city

  • For more than 100 years, animals were driven to the site along old drovers' roads
  • The site once included sidings to allow livestock to arrive by rail
  • The market traded livestock until 1993, when Arthur Johnson - which had operated on the site since 1888 - began holding weekly furniture auctions
image copyrightArthur Johnson and Sons

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