Owner of Hastings care home speaks out after fourth fire in a month

The owner of a derelict Hastings care home has issued a statement after the building went up in flames for the fourth time in a month.

Thursday, 30th May 2019, 1:42 pm
Mount Denys fire. Picture: Jim Breeds
Mount Denys fire. Picture: Jim Breeds

Forty firefighters have been tackling a blaze at the Mount Denys care home since 4.47am today (Thursday, May 30).

This morning’s blaze is the fourth at the building after previous fires on April 30, May 8 and May 18.

The building, although declared ‘surplus to requirements’, is still owned by East Sussex County Council.

Mount Denys fire. Picture: Jim Breeds

This morning, a spokesman said: “We are extremely concerned at the number of incidents at the former Mount Denys Care Home and Pinehill Day Centre buildings and have put in place extensive security measures. We are liaising with the fire and police services and Hastings Borough Council to minimise the risk of further damage.

“The buildings, which have been empty since 2014, have been boarded up and internal security cameras have been in place for some time. Since early 2018 there have also been regular security patrols of the site.

“In response to the recent incidents, the site has been fenced off and we have increased security, introducing 24 hour patrols and installing motion sensor cameras.

“We are currently looking at options for the future of the site, taking into account the priorities of the community, local council and county council.”

Mount Denys fire. Picture: Paul Malyon

Crews were called to the Mount Denys care home in The Ridge, at 4.47am.

Two fire engines were initially sent to the scene but, upon arrival, there was smoke billowing from the building and as the fire was discovered to be coming from the first floor and at the rear of the property, six more fire engines were called.

The Ridge was closed in both directions between Ivyhouse Lane and Elphinstone Road for a number of hours while the fire service dealt with the blaze.

A spokesman for the East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said crews using four breathing apparatus, two main jets and an aerial ladder platform managed to extinguish the fire by approximately 9.30am.

Mount Denys fire

The incident left a number of properties in the TN35 4PD area of Hastings with either no water or low pressure as a result of the fire service using fire hydrants.

Nearby residents were also advised to keep windows and doors closed as smoke was seen billowing from the building.

The cause of this fire is unknown, and the fire service spokesman said it was too early to work out the extent of the damage to the building.

The fire service remained at the scene at 1.27pm.

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