FIREFIGHTERS from Wellington have been helping to battle a huge blaze which broke out in a disused holiday centre in Devon on Monday afternoon (October 23).

They were among crews from 18 stations across Devon and Somerset called to a derelict building alight in Seaton, including Tiverton, Taunton, and Chard.

They found flames had taken hold in a large two-storey building measuring 230 feet by 165 feet in size, with smoke billowing across parts of the town.

The Seaton Heights hotel complex closed in 2005 and has since become a dilapidated eyesore in the seaside town.

Fire crews brought the incident under control but Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue (DSFR) commanders decided to allow a ‘controlled burn’ on the large site to continue.

The plan was to wait for the fire to reach a natural break and to then resume firefighting operations on Tuesday.

An environmental protection unit was mobilised to provide decontamination for firefighters on scene and a fire service drone was brought in to provide additional visibility to assist ‘firefighting decision-making and situational awareness’. 

The brigade scaled back the number of crew attending the incident overnight as the emergency operation entered day two.

A DSFR spokesperson said on Tuesday morning: “The fire has been brought under control and crews are dealing with different sectors, including a decontamination sector.

“Overnight, fire crews have continued to cool the boundary using an aerial ladder platform a water wall and one main jet.

“The incident has been scaled down to three pumps and crews are still damping down.”