Wellingborough pub destroyed in blaze

Firefighters have said they are treating a fire at a town pub as suspicious.

Four crews were called to the Eagle pub in Olympic Way shortly after 5am this morning.

The fire has completely destroyed the roof of the pub and the inside has been gutted in the blaze.

Steve Stock, station manager for the east Northants area, said: "We were called out shortly after 5am this morning. When we arrived we found the pub was well alight.

"Initially we were going to use breathing apparatus to enter the building but it became unsafe."

He said part of the floor had collapsed as well as the roof.

Firefighters also discovered cylinders of various types which were removed.

Mr Stock added: "We are continuing to douse any hot spots and will remain here for the rest of the day.

"The cause of the fire is still under investigation but we are treating it as potentially suspicious."

The Queensway road was closed for around two-and-a-half hours but has now reopened. Drivers are being urged to drive slowly in the area as cones have been placed on the road.

Neighbours reported hearing a loud bang as the roof collapsed.

Nathan Halford, 33, of Minerva Way, said: I woke up this morning and got a text from my mum telling me what had happened.

"I feel quite disheartened really because it used to be my local. It had been closed for about a year but we were all hoping it would reopen.

"It used to be the focal point of the community."

A resident living opposite the pub who did not want to be named said: "I'm quite shaken up - this is the second time this has happened. There was a fire at the pub two or three years ago."