Mystery surrounds Smithills flat blaze
Firefighters were called to the attic flat at about 8.55pm on Saturday after neighbours spotted smoke from the property in Chorley Old Road.
There was no-one inside at the time of the fire and other residents managed to flee the building before firefighters arrived.
Firefighters are now trying to establish the cause of the blaze — and find out who lives in the one-bedroomed property.
The walls and timber rafters of the lounge were destroyed and there was extensive smoke damage to the bedroom, kitchen, bathroom and landing.
Crews tackled the flames for around two hours and were back at the site on Sunday.
Watch manager Karsten Boyle, of Bolton Central Fire Station, said: “The flat was well alight when we arrived last night.
“Luckily there was no one inside at the time of the fire, which has completely destroyed the flat.
“We’re now trying to establish who lives here and find out who the landlord is. From there we can investigate the cause of the fire.”
A neighbour, who did not wish to be named, said: “All I saw was all of the smoke and then the fire engines last night. I think it’s terrible what has happened.
“It’s a good job no one was in there at the time. I don’t know who lives there and I very rarely see anyone.
“I’m not even sure who owns it.”
Firefighters also wanted to speak to the landlord about the state of the old property, which had been converted into six flats.
For more information about free home safety checks, call 0800 555 815 or go to: manchesterfire.gov.uk/fire_safety_advice/home_fire_risk_assessments.
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