Shop workers had a lucky escape when a kebab shop went up in flames this morning.
Plumes of smoke were seen billowing from the roof of Netherfield shopping centre after fryers caught fire at Al Fairoz Kebabish on Farthing Grove.
Four shops either side were evacuated, leaving staff stood out in the car park while fire crews dealt with the flames.
Neighbour Sylvia O’Mahoney says the kebab shop worker, who lives across the road, rushed back to the restaurant after being woken from his bed.
She said: “I saw the smoke going up and then people came over to wake him out of bed so he could go over to the shop.
“It was just lucky that no-one was in the shop when the fire was going on.”
Four fire engines were called out at 9.08am after staff at Cox and Robinson Chemists raised the alarm.
Laura Barry said: “I was checking stock on the shelf when I suddenly smelt smoke. I rushed out to ask if anyone else could smell it.
“We went out the back and saw plumes of smoke from the roof so ran back through the shop and told everyone to get out.”
Station Commander Paul McShane said: “It appears as though the fire started in the fryers accidently.
“When the fire crews turned up we had the kebab shop and five other units smoke locked.
“We believe the gentleman had been in this morning and turned everything on and gone away, as is his usual routine, and when he cam back the chip fryers were on fire.
“Now we are just working on clearing the other units of smoke and investigating further to see exactly how the fire started. “