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Firefighters Issue Warning After Tea Light Causes Major Building Fire - Blacksmiths Yard, Derby


IMG_2861_Palfry_Sadler Gate_29 Oct 17.jpg

An investigation into a major fire at an award winning Derby Bar has concluded that the fire was started by an unattended Halloween tea light.

Firefighters from Nottingham Road, Kingsway, Long Eaton, Melbourne and Ascot Drive were called to a fire at The Palfrey on Blacksmiths Yard, Derby at 04:20 hours on Sunday 29 October 2017.  On arrival firefighters were met by a well-developed fire which had started in the bar area of the building.  Unfortunately, despite their best efforts, firefighters were unable to prevent the fire spreading to the roof space, which caused extensive damage to the property.

Fire Investigator, Station Manager Adam Hind said: “Unfortunately an unattended tea light started a fire behind the bar of this thriving city centre business.  It’s absolutely devastating to see the extensive damage that an inexpensive tea light can actually cause.

“As more and more people have candles in their homes and businesses, whether they are to add atmosphere to Halloween celebrations, or just for decorative effect, I’d ask people to use electric tea lights and candles as a safe alternative.”

Speaking following the fire, Sharon Marlow who co-owns The Palfrey with her daughter Amie said: “We are absolutely heartbroken by the devastation that this fire has caused to our business.

“The whole team had been on a high following our recent award of the Best Derby Bar, and we were all looking forward to continuing to promote The Palfrey as the place to be as we head towards Christmas and the New Year, the busiest time of year for any bar.

“You hear the fire service talk about the devastating consequence of fire and how you can avoid one by taking some simple precautionary measures, but until you are affected yourself, you really can’t understand the impact – it’s absolutely soul destroying.  

“Thankfully no one was injured in this fire, however we have a business to rebuild; a business that our employees rely on; a business that we have put our life and soul into building, but I know our loyal customers will be ready and waiting for us when we are ready to reopen.  One thing for certain is that when we do reopen, we will be having a strict candle policy, only electric candles from now on and I’d advise anyone else with candles or tea lights in the home or their place of business, to do the same before it’s too late and you’re left picking up the pieces.”

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service would like to remind people of the following tea light/candle fire safety advice:

  • NEVER leave a burning candle/tea light unattended.
  • Put candles/tea lights out when leaving a room.
  • Place candles and tea lights in a fire resistant holder and on a fire resistant surface.
  • Keep candles and tea lights away from soft furnishings, such as curtains etc.
  • Replace all traditional candles and tea lights with inexpensive electric alternatives.

For more information about keeping safe at home, or if you have any business fire safety concerns visit

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