Belfast Telegraph

Homes evacuated as Coleraine pub goes up in flames

By Adrian Rutherford

A former Coleraine pub now owned by the Republic's toxic bank has been destroyed in a late-night blaze.

Firefighters were called to the Nama-owned Squires Bar site at Park Street early yesterday.

At its height, 40 firefighters and eight appliances from as far away as Londonderry were involved in tackling the blaze, which destroyed the main part of the derelict building.

Homes nearby had to be evacuated with some residents taking shelter in the town hall.

It took around four hours to put out the blaze.

Police say it is not yet clear if the fire was started deliberately.

The former pub is owned by Nama, which was set up to buy and manage mainly bad property loans held by Dublin-based financial institutions.

Its aim is to remove bad or impaired assets from the banks' balance sheets, allowing them to rebuild their financial strength.

Geoff White, group commander with the fire service, said it had been a sizeable blaze.

He said the cause of the blaze was still under investigation.

Meanwhile in a separate incident 35 firefighters battled a blaze at a derelict meat factory in south Armagh.

The fire service was alerted to the incident on the Millvale Road in Bessbrook about 3.30am on Saturday morning.

Belfast Telegraph


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