Shocking drone footage shows the enormous extent of the fire which has broken out at a Sussex hotel today (Friday).
Eddie Mitchell captured the aerial images of the flames raging through the Claremont Hotel, near Eastbourne pier.
At least 12 fire engines have been sent to the scene and the hotel has been evacuated – with no reports of injuries.
Evacuated guests are being offered help at Eastbourne Town Hall. Crews were first called at 8.52am to reports of a fire in the basement of the hotel. It quickly spread to the front and then raged up through the roof.
ESFRS (East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service) said in a statement, “We are asking people to avoid Eastbourne seafront as firefighters tackle a serious fire.
“Crews are using breathing apparatus and main jets to tackle the fire. Nearby roads are closed while the firefighters work.”
A later statement from the fire service urged residents to keep doors and windows closed to prevent excess smoke inhalation.
It said, “Twelve fire engines are on the scene along with several officers, aerial ladder platforms and command support units. We have also sent a high volume pump and a specialist fire-fighting foam vehicle from Newhaven.”
Our reporter at the scene said nearby hotels are also being evacuated due to fears of the fire spreading. Logan Macleod said windows at the hotel could be heard exploding.
Another witness at the scene said, “It’s absolutely huge. It started at the back of the hotel, now the whole front of the hotel is on fire. Loads of people are running around, there’s loads and loads of smoke.”
Many of the seafront roads have been shut off while the incident is dealt with.