Major fire causes 'devastation' at Haltwhistle working men's club

The alarm was raised at about 2am after a fire broke out at Haltwhistle Working Men's club. Credit: Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service

A working men's club in Northumberland was badly damaged after a fire damaged the building.

The town centre was cordoned off after the fire broke out at Haltwhistle Working Men's Club at about 2am on Thursday 1 December.

Power in the area was isolated and residents evacuated from nearby properties. There were no reported injuries though the building has been severely damaged.

The alarm was raised around 2am to a fire at the club on the junction of Bank House and Lanty’s Lonnen. 

Shealene Anderson, a cook at the Manor House in Haltwhistle, said the pub had been providing soup and sandwiches for firefighters.

"We're trying to stick together as a community," she said. "When you look at it now it's heart-wrenching."

She added: "It's emotional. There's a lot of memories come from that place for the whole community.

"Me and my mam used to go every Sunday for bingo. I met my husband in the front bar. I made a lot of friends there.

"It's a bit devastating for the whole place. The whole community is affected.

The fire service said it sent six pumps and an aerial ladder to bring the fire under control.

People are being advised to avoid the area.

Haltwhistle town centre was cordoned off. Credit: Sue Leeming

Group manager Richard Leighton said: “The building has been severely damaged by fire with a partial collapse of the gable end. 

“We’ve been working closely with Northumbria Police and the utility companies to make the building safe and we will be here for some time to fully extinguish the fire. 

“I’d like to thank the local community for their support and understanding while we remain on scene and remind people to avoid the area. A fire investigation is underway to establish the cause of the blaze.” 

Haltwhistle Working Men's Club has been badly damaged in the fire. Credit: Google Maps

A Northumbria Police spokesperson said: “At about 1:45am today (Thursday) we were alerted by the fire service to a fire at Haltwhistle Working Men’s Club.

“Emergency services are currently at the scene. Thankfully nobody is believed to have been injured.

“A number of roads have been closed in the area as a safety precaution and they are expected to remain so for a number of hours.

“Officers are supporting the fire service as they look to establish the cause of the blaze.”

ITV Tyne Tees has been told road diversions will be put in place throughout the morning and the public is asked to completely avoid the area.

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