Huge blaze at old Odeon cinema as 12 fire engines race to scene

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A massive fire is raging at the former Odeon cinema in Preston with 12 fire engines currently at the scene.

Fire crews actually spent three hours tackling another huge blaze at the same location on Saturday (May 14), which was also once home to Tokyo Jo's.

The fire was reported to have started at the building off Church Street before 8pm this afternoon.

Thick black smoke was seen billowing across Preston city centre, with witnesses reporting seeing it as far away as Deepdale Retail Park.

Crowds have gathered at the site, which sits adjacent to the Evoque nightclub, and police are also at the scene.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service tweeted earlier: "We currently have 12 fire engines at a building fire on Avenham Street in Preston.

"Please avoid the area and keep your windows and doors closed if you're affected by smoke."

A spokesperson for Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service later confirmed to LancsLive that two aerial ladder platforms arrived at the scene with the 12 fire engines.

"There is still quite a large smoke plume so people should keep their windows and doors shut," they said.

"There are quite a few road closures in place which the police are managing."

No injuries have been reported but the fire service paramedics from North West Ambulance Service are at the scene and ready to assist.

LancsLive reports that significant damage has been inflicted at the former sites of the Odeon and Tokyo Jo's.

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Not only is this the second fire to hit the building in the last week after an incident on Saturday, it is also the third incident in Preston in a week, after damage was done to the former St Joseph's Orphanage on Mount Street on Friday (May 13).

Matthew Brown, leader of Preston City Council, today expressed concerns over this "possible trend"

He said: "The recent fires taking place in Preston City Centre are very disturbing suggesting a possible trend. It has been raised by senior members and officers with both fire and police services. We will continue supporting our emergency services to effectively deal with the matter."

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