'Demolition' needed at Manchester building fire scene

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Firefighters are to partially demolish a derelict building in Manchester city centre, following a large fire.

The fire started on the ground floor at the old Dobbins store on Oldham Street in the Northern Quarter at about 18:00 BST on Thursday.

About 100 people were forced to leave nearby buildings, although no-one is believed to have been hurt.

The fire service said despite the main blaze being out, small pockets of fire were still being dealt with.

Overnight accommodation was arranged by Manchester City Council for those forced from nearby flats.

Steve Thomas, from Greater Manchester Fire Service, said there was a collapse in the building, with some demolition work required.

"Throughout the night we have been trying to fight the fire. We are working at the front and the rear of the building to bring the final elements under control," he said.

"The difficulty today will be the commuters of Manchester who travel up and down Oldham Street, as it will be closed for some time.

"In the medium-term there will have to be some demolition, which will affect the street."

Oldham Street is closed to traffic between Great Ancoats Street and Warwick Street. Diversions are in place.

The street is also closed to pedestrians between Great Ancoats Street and Houldworth Street.

Manchester City Council said the closure is expected to remain in place until Wednesday.

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