Busi­ness as usual just 24 hours af­ter bar fire

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Team Work - By Sa­man­tha Wil­liams

Twenty-four hours af­ter a fire tore through a town cen­tre bar’s roof the venue was back open for busi­ness.

Fire crews and po­lice were called to The Auc­tion House Bar, in New Street, at 11.50am last Wed­nes­day (Au­gust 13), af­ter a blaze started in the roof space.

Crews were at the scene for just over an hour ex­tin­guish­ing the flames and mak­ing the scene safe.

How­ever, af­ter staff worked all night to clear up the dam­age, the bar was up and run­ning the very next day.

Owner Alan Daly said: “With the help of some friends and re­ally good staff – and work­ing through the night – we were open on the Thurs­day night.


“The bar wasn’t af­fected by the fire. It started in the space above the toi­lets, which was used as stor­age.

“The fire ser­vice were bril­liant. Even though they were on strike their quick ac­tion meant only one room suf­fered dam­age.”

In to­tal, five fire en­gines, two high ac­cess ve­hi­cles, po­lice and am­bu­lances were called to the blaze, which is be­lieved to have been trig­gered by an elec­tri­cal fault. No one was in­jured.

Bar man­ager Sean Fur­long was en­joy­ing a day off when he drove past the busi­ness and no­ticed all the com­mo­tion.

He said: “The bar was open at the time and had to be evac­u­ated.”

Nearby Cafè Nero and the Cen­tre for Cre­ativ­ity and En­ter­prise (CCE) were also evac­u­ated as a pre­cau­tion and Gil­bert Road and part of New Rents were cor­doned off by po­lice. The fire was out by 1pm. The Auc­tion House Bar, op­po­site Ash­ford’s First World War tank, opened at the end of May this year.

At the time, Mr Daly said he wanted to cater to a more ma­ture clien­tele than other bars, pubs and clubs in the town.

The venue, pre­vi­ously known as The Source bar, of­fers pre­mium spir­its and craft beers, with staff trained in cre­at­ing au­then­tic cock­tails from fresh in­gre­di­ents.

Pic­ture: Gary Browne FM3351828

Man­ager, Sean Pa­trick in the fire dam­aged room on the top floor of The Auc­tion House Bar in New Street, Ash­ford

Sue Chap­man, owner of Galileo Solutions pho­tog­ra­phy, took this pho­to­graph of the roof fire at The Auc­tion House bar in New Street, Ash­ford

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