Belfast Telegraph

Belfast pub fire staff 'safe and well' - Lewis Tavern thanks public for support

By Mark Edwards

The Lewis Tavern in Dundonald has confirmed that all its staff are "safe and well" after a fire ravaged the pub on Thursday morning.

Police closed the Upper Newtownards Road in both directions as 30 firefighters dealt with the fire at the pub near the Ulster Hospital.

LIVE: Firefighters tackle blaze at pub

Posted by Belfast Telegraph on Thursday, January 31, 2019

Thick plumes of black smoke emanating from the roof ofThe Lewis Tavern Restaurant stretched across east Belfast.

It is understood the fire took hold at around 8am on Thursday.

A message posted on the Lewis Tavern's Facebook page read: "Thank you for the messages of concern. All staff are safe and well."

The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) said 30 firefighters, five fire appliances and two specialist appliances attended the scene.

Firefighters also searched adjacent buildings.

A NIFRS spokesperson said that the operation had been scaled back on Thursday afternoon.

“NIFRS received a call at 8.16am this morning (31 January 2019) to a fire at a bar on the Upper Newtownards Road in East Belfast.

“The incident has been scaled back and there is currently 1 Fire Appliance in attendance at the scene.   Firefighting operations are likely to continue for a number of hours this evening.

“Firefighters worked hard to prevent the fire from spreading to adjacent homes."

Police are treating the fire as non-suspicious and there are no reports of any casualties or rescues involved.

The Upper Newtownards Road has fully reopened.

Colin Neill, chief executive of Hospitality Ulster, said: "It is devastating to see the footage of the fire at one of our members' premises this morning at The Lewis in Dundonald. Our thoughts are with the management and staff and we'll do all we can to support them at this time."

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