Oxford

Oxford road reopened after blaze guts bike shop

Cycle King fire
Image caption The roof of the three-storey terraced building collapsed during the blaze

A major Oxford road shut after a blaze destroyed a bike shop has partially reopened.

Cowley Road was closed all day on Sunday after the fire broke out at the three-storey terraced Cycle King shop at 07:30 BST.

About 70 firefighters tackled the blaze as ambulance crews and the British Red Cross helped neighbours who were evacuated from neighbouring properties.

Firefighters thought people could be trapped inside but a spokesman said "this fortunately was not the case".

'Rapidly developing fire'

The blaze was spotted by a passing police patrol car which stopped at the scene.

Thames Valley Police then helped evacuate neighbours from adjoining properties.

An Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: "Crews were initially faced with a rapidly developing fire with people believed to be trapped in the floors above, this fortunately was not the case.

"Firefighters had to fight the fire in arduous, difficult and very hot conditions working hard to prevent the fire spreading to neighbouring properties.

"Crews searched the building and with the use of specialist appliances, the rescue tender and hydraulic platform managed to contain the fire to cycle shop."

The gas and electricity boards isolated supplies and police and the county council co-ordinated the closure of Cowley Road.

No-one was hurt in the blaze.

Police said one lane of Cowley Road was reopened earlier and was being controlled by temporary traffic lights.

The cause of the fire is not yet known but police said it is not thought to have been started deliberately.

An investigation is to be conducted.

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