Leeds & West Yorkshire

Police treat Bradford mill fire as arson

A major fire at a Bradford mill is being treated as arson.

West Yorkshire Police said an initial investigation of the building off Thornton Road suggested the blaze was started deliberately.

More than 70 firefighters tackled the fire on Tuesday evening and at one point it was thought the disused five-storey building could collapse.

Roads around the area were closed overnight as firefighters tackled the flames but no-one was injured.

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said that the mill was already engulfed in flame when crews arrived at the scene.

Steve Rhodes, from the service, said: "The fire took hold very, very quickly and it spread to all five floors and there was a risk to buildings in front, adjoining it and the buildings at the side."

Student Rachel Hughes, who saw the mill's roof fall down, said: "Everyone was running towards the smoke to see what it was. It smelt strong and you could feel the heat a way away.

"We watched the fire for about half an hour and then the roof fell down. It was the largest noise, like thunder."

Fire officers are revisiting the scene with structural engineers and are working closely with the police to investigate the cause of the blaze.

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