Clean-up after Bolton bread factory blaze

Image caption The fire is believed to have started in an industrial oven

A clean-up operation is under way after a major fire at the Warburtons bread factory in Bolton.

About 100 people were moved from the building after the fire broke out on Hereford Road at 1450 BST on Thursday.

Firefighters from Greater Manchester and Lancashire were battling the blaze, which is believed to have started by accident in an industrial oven.

Andrea Law from Warburtons said the company would still be delivering bread to the North West on Friday.

"Obviously we can't see what damage has been caused in that bakery, but we do have 13 other sites across the UK and they are currently all sending bread to the North West," she said.

"We will do our very best to fulfil our deliveries."

A Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said the building was heavily smoke-logged and firefighters had to use breathing apparatus during the operation.

Warburtons' association with Bolton stretches back to 1870 when the family opened a small grocer's shop on Blackburn Road, which stands opposite the present Warburtons headquarters.

The family-run firm produces one million products a day and is the UK's biggest bakery, employing about 5,000 workers.

The Bolton plant employs 234 workers and is due to undergo a £25m upgrade.

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