Farnworth chip shop forced to close by fire
A BLAZE that ripped through a popular chip shop and cafe has forced owners to close.
Bosses at AJ’s Cafe in Albert Road, Farnworth, have blamed an overheating thermostat for the fire yesterday morning.
The blaze, which started at 11am, has caused severe damage to the shop.
Staff working at the front of the building managed to get customers outside and the blaze caused minor smoke damage to the cafe area.
It is understood employees had only just turned the chip range on ahead of the day’s business.
Firefighters said that a thermostat, just underneath the chip range and counter, had developed a fault and started to overheat. The heat caused a fire, which reacted with oil in the range and spread quickly.
No-one was injured and the chip shop, also run by AJ’s, will be shut for the foreseeable future, while the cafe is expected to reopen tomorrow.
AJ’s manager, who did not want to be named, said: “I wasn’t here at the time but the girls were out front and could smell the smoke.
“They managed to get everyone out of the building and got the firefighters here quickly.
“The smoke damage is very bad but it could have been worse.”
Firefighters had to cut off the cafe’s gas, while a side window was also smashed during the fire.
A crew from Bolton Central fire station attended and a spokesman said: “This was a serious fire and, fortunately, there were no injuries and no damage to the structure of the building. The chip range was destroyed and the smoke damage to the area used as the chip shop was severe.”
A message on the cafe’s door read: “Due to unforeseen circum-stances we will be closed until Wednesday. We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your continuing support.”
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