An investigation is under way to establish how a devastating Kettering fire started.
Kettering Bedding Centre in Regent Street went up in flames at about 12.30pm yesterday (Monday), with the blaze destroying the unit and a van parked outside.
Roads in the area were closed and people evacuated with nine families unable to return home overnight because of the effects of the fire on nearby properties.
READ MORE: Kettering shop gutted by fire
Firefighters remain at the scene today to monitor hotspots within the remains of the building and make the area safe.
A Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) spokesman said: “A safety cordon means evacuated properties adjacent to and opposite the business premises remain inaccessible, with a section of Regent Street remaining closed to through traffic and pedestrians.
“Officers from Northamptonshire Police remain on scene to assist the work of NFRS.
“An investigation into the cause of the fire is under way.”
Smoke billowed from the shop and was visible across the town before the fire spread with huge flames coming out of the shop’s frontage.
Kettering Bedding Centre had run a business there since the late 1960s.
Yesterday devastated firm director Anthony Caswell-Jones described the moment he fled the burning building.
He said the the fire took hold in the roof.
He said: “Someone was working on the roof doing repairs and then I heard the smoke detectors going off.
“There was quite a big fire on the roof.
“I grabbed a fire hydrant and then the smoke just hit me so quickly.
“I got out and rang 999.”
Residents affected by the fire and requiring accommodation are advised to contact Kettering Council on 01536 410333, email email@example.com, or visit the council offices in Bowling Green Road.