Beds, Herts & Bucks

Letchworth flat fire death 'not suspicious'

Bittern Way fire
Image caption Twenty-five Hertfordshire firefighters tackled the fire in Letchworth

The death of a man in a fire at a block of flats in Hertfordshire earlier is not being treated as suspicious, police have said.

Officers named the victim of the fire at Bittern Way, Letchworth, as Barry Collings, 53, who lived at the property.

Emergency crews were called shortly after midnight on Tuesday.

Ms Collings' family said his death was a tragic shock and that he had a wide circle of friends.

Fire crews from Biggleswade and Letchworth, as well as an ambulance area response team, were called to deal with the blaze.

Medical checks

East of England Ambulance service spokesman Gary Sanderson said: "Most of the residents were out of the flats on our arrival and were being cared for by police in the street adjacent to the fire."

The nearby Grange Community Centre was opened for the people who had been moved out of their homes.

"Paramedics also visited them to make medical checks," Mr Sanderson said.

Twenty-five Hertfordshire firefighters tackled the fire and ambulance staff went in when it was safe for them.

The block of flats remained cordoned off on Tuesday while scenes of crime officers carried out an investigation.

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