Punters evacuated in Saffron Walden pub chimney blaze

PUBLISHED: 10:59 24 February 2015 | UPDATED: 11:02 24 February 2015

Firefighters were called to the blaze on the High Street, Saffron Walden.

Firefighters were called to the blaze on the High Street, Saffron Walden.

Archant

Punters had to be evacuated and a blaze extinguished on Monday night, after customers noticed something amiss with a pub's chimney in the centre of town.

Punters had to be evacuated and a blaze extinguished on Monday night, after customers noticed something amiss with a pub’s chimney in the centre of town.

Two patrons entering the Cross Keys on High Street, Saffron Walden, told staff they had seen “something coming out of your chimney”, minutes before alarms sounded in the pub, parts of which dates back to the 16th century.

Essex Fire was called shortly after 8pm, and two crews from Saffron Walden arrived on the scene within minutes.

Around ten guests of the pub and boutique hotel waited outside while firefighters attended the blaze, which they extinguished by 8.30pm.

After patrons had safely returned inside, crews stayed to use a thermal image camera to check for any remaining hotspots, which they had dealt with by 9.30pm.

Cross Keys owner, Chris Gerard, told the Reporter the “modern” chimney had been swept and cleaned in the last few months, so was unable to identify the cause of the fire.

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