People evacuated from homes as major fire engulfs former Fisons site in Bramford
PUBLISHED: 06:46 06 May 2019 | UPDATED: 11:23 06 May 2019
People have been evacuated from their homes as firefighters tackle a major blaze which has engulfed the former Fisons site in Bramford.
Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service was called at 4.58am to the blaze, which has torn through two four-storey buildings on the site in Paper Mill Lane, just outside Ipswich.
Aerial photographs taken at the scene appear to show the main building completely dominated in flames, with huge plumes of smoke coming from the area.
People have also described hearing explosions and popping noises as far away as Ipswich town centre, caused by LPG cylinders which are inside the building.
There are currently 14 fire service vehicles on the scene, including two aerial appliances. There are 11 crews from Suffolk and three from Essex.
Network Rail has also been informed, as there is thought to be some grass on fire near to the train line.
Highways England has also warned motorists driving past the fire, which is close to junctions 52 and 53 of the A14, to beware of “large amounts of smoke blowing across the carriageways”.
A Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said people were being asked to stay indoors and keep their doors and windows shut, because of the huge plumes of smoke.
The spokesman later said people were being evacuated from their homes, although it is not clear how many at this stage.
A Salvation Army spokesman on the scene said: “It's terrible to see, there's some nasty things in the smoke. I'm not sure what's going to happen with the building, it was only last month it was on fire. We were called out before 6am to come and support the firefighters.”
Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service has since confirmed the fire was under control by 7.48am, but crews will remain on site for the remainder of the day due to fears one building may collapse.
The main Fisons factory building is ranked among Britain's most endangered buildings by the Victorian Society.
The wooden structure of the old warehouse is Grade II listed.
It is not the first time the Fisons site has been hit by fire. Only last month, six fire engines were called to a blaze which was raging in a two-storey building on the site.