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Newcastle fire: 'No guarantees' building is empty

Firefighters at the scene of a major fire in Newcastle city centre have said they cannot guarantee the building is empty, ITV Tyne Tees' Gregg Easteal reports.

Public told to avoid area due to 'amounts of smoke'

People have been warned to avoid Newcastle city centre due to the large building fire in Cross Street.

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said the area was filled with "large amounts of smoke".

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Footage shows smoke billowing from Newcastle fire

Footage posted from the scene of a large blaze in Newcastle city centre shows plumes of smoke billowing from the building.

People have been reported inside the building, which has been ablaze for more than hour.

It contain the shop Kard Bar and a number of offices in the three floors above, Tyne and Wear Fire Service said.

An eyewitness told ITV News flames could be seen at the building's top floor windows, though these seemed to be under control within an hour.

People feared trapped at Newcastle city centre fire

People are believed to be inside a building in Newcastle where a large fire has broken out, Tyne and Wear Fire Service said.

Fifty-five fire fighters and numerous engines are currently battling the blaze at The Kard Bar Prints & Posters shop on Cross Street, which also has offices above it, the service said.

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A spokesperson said there had been "persons reported" at the scene of the fire, but was unable to confirm how many, or where they were.

Police have warned people to avoid the area if possible, and traffic is currently being affected by the incident.

Colback embarrassed by Newcastle defeat at Palace

Jack Colback admitted Newcastle's performance in a 5-1 defeat at Crystal Palace had been "embarrassing".

Yannick Bolasie and James McArthur both struck twice as the Eagles hammered the hapless Tynesiders 5-1 at Selhurst Park, Newcastle's seventh defeat in 11 league clashes to heap the pressure on Newcastle manager Steve McClaren.

Jack Colback didn't hold back. Credit: PA

He readily accepted Newcastle's board could easily lose patience with him, while Colback did not hold back in his assessment of the game.

"We had a game plan and in the first 15-20 minutes it worked perfectly. We got the goal and you could see they were rattled," Colback told Newcastle's official club website.

"But we let them straight back in, then I made a mistake for the second goal and that put us on the back foot again. After that it was pretty embarrassing, really.

"Maybe we're not strong enough character-wise. It seems as if as soon as things go bad, it goes really bad.

"We had that last year and probably the year before as well. It's something that's hanging over the team that we need to get rid of.

"We had shown signs of improvement but the Leicester game and this one have really set us back quite a lot."

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Tiote: I'm not the unsettling influence at Newcastle

Cheick Tiote has shrugged off claims that he was a "bad egg" in the Newcastle dressing room as he attempts to rejuvenate his career on Tyneside.

The 29-year-old Ivory Coast international midfielder is back in the team after finally recovering from a long-standing knee injury and is working hard to rediscover his early form for the Magpies, which at one point saw him linked with both Arsenal and Manchester United.

Tiote is back in the Newcastle team. Credit: PA

However, he returned having been accused in some media quarters of being an unsettling influence within the camp, something flatly denied by head coach Steve McClaren.

Tiote told the Chronicle: "It didn't affect me, I know myself that I didn't do anything bad. Everybody at the club and my partner knows that.

"I just do my best for the team, that is the most important thing. All I want is to see the team go forward and win games."

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