Fire breaks out at Milton Keynes tower block - which failed a safety inspection earlier this year

A fire started in a Milton Keynes tower block which has been deemed NOT up to standards to stop fire spreading
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

A pan fire started in one of the flats in Mellish Court, Bletchley, last night (Thursday, October 22) which saw emergency services called to the incident at around 11.50pm.

After an inspection in September 2020, findings show that in the event of a fire, Mellish Court has not been built to the standards now expected to prevent the risk of smoke and fire spreading between flats and floors.

Subsequently, the 60-year-old building was placed under a 24-hour warden service operated by BFRS, on Monday, October 12 as a 'proactive' safety precaution.

Mellish Court. Photo: Google MapsMellish Court. Photo: Google Maps
Mellish Court. Photo: Google Maps

The safety measures mean trained officials are on hand at both blocks at all times to evacuate the buildings, particularly more vulnerable residents, just in case a fire breaks out.

Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service (BFRS) said it sent two fire engines and two crews to the scene last night, and that firefighters used one hose reel and two sets of breathing apparatus to deal with the situation - extra fire engines were 'initially mobilised, but ultimately not required'.

A BFRS spokesperson said: "While carrying out a regular patrol, a warden heard the smoke detector, could smell smoke, called 999 and alerted the occupant.

"On arrival, two firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the flat, where they found a smoking pan of rice on the hob. A man inside the flat was assessed by South Central Ambulance Service.

"Crews remained at the scene for an hour checking for any potential fire spread both internally and externally, and confirmed that none was discovered."

A Milton Keynes Council (MKC) spokesperson said: "There were no injuries. Wardens raised the alarm and were on hand to advise residents before BFRS arrived to deal with the small cooking related fire. The resident was able to return to the flat shortly after."

MKC said its colleagues are at Mellish Court this morning (Friday) speaking with residents.

The council insists the building is safe and that BFRS support that position.

The Citizen recently spoke with Labour's Cabinet member for Housing, Emily Darlington, who has spent hours talking to residents in the flats over the past few months. She admitted there were just two options - total refurbishment or demolition.

Read more: {|Demolition of almost 200 homes is "likely" solution to tower block safety problem in Milton Keynes