Blaze destroys disused pub

MORE than 30 firefighters were called out to tackle a huge blaze at the former Alpine Lodge on Wednesday.

Crews from Wetherby, Harrogate, Knaresborough, Boroughbridge and Acomb were called to battle the fire at the disused pub at Kirk Deighton at 12.37am.

Barry Edwards, who lives near the old pub, saw the fire and said the building was burning for hours.

He said: "My son was woken by a helicopter and saw smoke so he rang the fire brigade. I got out of bed to watch."

"It was incredible to see it go up. What was left was just a shell, just a mess."

The two-storey chalet-style building is owned by Samuel Smith's Old Brewery. It was a popular local haunt but has been empty for more than ten years.

It used to sit alongside the A1 before the route was moved.

Mr Edwards said he used to drink there when he was younger.

"It's just a shame to see because it's a local pub that should have re-opened," he said.

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Fire Service said firefighters were at the scene for nearly 13 hours.

Six fire engines were sent out as well as a large water bowser, a highridge platform and an aerial ladder platform.

The A168 was closed for several hours while firefighters tackled the blaze but was re-opened at 7.30am on Wednesday.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by police and fire brigade investigators.