River collapse Egremont house demolished

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Media captionThe demolition of a house has begun after the rear side of it collapsed into a Cumbrian river following heavy rain.

A house has been demolished after the rear side of it collapsed into a Cumbrian river following heavy rain.

Engineers worked through the night after the rear of the four-storey property in Egremont plunged into the River Ehen on Tuesday.

The building was empty at the time and no-one was hurt, but neighbouring homes were evacuated as a precaution.

Friends of owners Ken O'Hara and Belinda Taylor, who run a nearby pub, said some possessions had been saved.

The Environment Agency and Copeland Council said temporary flood defences were being put in place to prevent further damage to properties in the area.

Image caption Engineers worked through the night to demolish the building

Pat Graham, from Copeland Council, said: "It was simply the force of the water in the river that caused the problem.

"We have carried out a controlled demolition of the property, which so far has gone very well.

"The gable end has been left for the moment as we need to be sure that this is taken down carefully to ensure neighbouring properties are not damaged.

"The tenants who were in the property have been rehoused and we can confirm that no-one was hurt."

Ms Graham said talks were being held with the Environment Agency over the condition of a nearby weir and whether improvement work needs to be done.

Cumbria Police said some roads in the area remained closed.

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