Recycling plant bosses upbeat over fire

BOSSES at a recycling plant ravaged by fire have remained defiant and promised the blaze will not stop them from completing improvements to the facility.

SUFFOLK: Bosses at a recycling plant ravaged by fire have remained defiant and promised the blaze will not stop them from completing improvements to the facility.

Around 50 firefighters were called to the Countrystyle Group recycling and composting centre in Parham, near Framlingham, around 4.30pm on Monday.

The blaze - which started in the main recycling building - was caused by engineering operations being carried out at the facility.

A cylinder of highly-flammable acetylene gas was also inside, prompting fears it could engulf the plant in flames.

Staff were evacuated and firefighters remained on site yesterday to carry out their investigations and ensure no further issues arose.

Countrystyle Group acquired the recycling facility back in early 2009 and were in the process of upgrading to a new state of the art in-vessel composting system which was near to completion.

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Bosses at the centre confirmed yesterday “significant damage” had been caused, resulting in the loss of some equipment and machinery - although it was too early to say what the final financial cost would be.

Meanwhile, arrangements have been made to divert waste to alternative sites, they said.

Trevor Heathcote, chairman of Countrystyle Group, said: “Obviously, the news of the fire has been extremely disappointing after all our hard efforts to get the new system up and running. However, I am just pleased that no-one was hurt and I would like to thank Suffolk Fire Service for their assistance and support.

“Although not a great start to the new year, I will not let this set us back from our plans to expand our recycling services.”

Fire crews from Framlingham, Saxmundham, Ipswich, Leiston and Woodbridge were called to the scene and tackled the flames.

A turntable ladder and two water bowsers were also used to fight the blaze, which had spread to the roof.

Half the building and all the walls and roof were destroyed in the fire, which was put out at 8.54pm.