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Latest on Dover fires at former Club Karma, Adrian Street, and at Townwall Street

By Sam Lennon

Two fires half a mile apart and within three hours of each other are being treated as suspicious.

They happened yesterday at a derelict building at Townwall Street, Dover, near the East Cliff junction, and then a former nightclub at Adrian Street.

A Kent Fire and Rescue Service spokesman told our sister paper the East Kent Mercury: "Both fires are believed to be suspicious.

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Efforts continued to put out the nightclub building fire. Picture: Sam Lennon
Efforts continued to put out the nightclub building fire. Picture: Sam Lennon

"There is no information yet on the extent of the damage though."

A police spokesman had earlier said of the nightclub building incident: "There were no reported injuries and the fire is being treated as suspicious.

"Enquiries are ongoing."

But Kent Police say as far as they are concerned the cause of the first fire is still not know and is also still being investigated.

The first fire was at a building off Townwall Street, near East Cliff, Dover, and fire crews were called there at 5.29pm yesterday.

Bystanders there were shocked to suddenly hear another set of sirens, with police and fire engines rushing westwards along Townwall Street.

A pillar of smoke could be seen in the distance and it turned out that the former nightclub in Adrian Street, a few yards from York Street, was ablaze with flames coming through the roof.

Firefighters were called at 7.51pm to that.

Sid Clarke, who works at the Best Western Hotel on the seafront, said: "I was walking up from the underpass from the seafront when I first saw the smoke."The fire turned out to be bigger than I thought."

Eyewitness Kevin Stewkesbury added: "I was driving past and stopped when I saw the fire.

"I am concerned that this is the second in the same evening."

A firefighter on a height platform tackles the nightclub blaze.Picture: Sam Lennon.
A firefighter on a height platform tackles the nightclub blaze.Picture: Sam Lennon.
The former Club Karma with flames through its roof.. Picture: Sam Lennon
The former Club Karma with flames through its roof.. Picture: Sam Lennon
Eyewitness Simon Goodenough. Picture: Sam Lennon
Eyewitness Simon Goodenough. Picture: Sam Lennon

Another eyewitness, Simon Goodenough, said: "I was just driving down the road and noticed fire engines and smoke coming from the building.

"I decided to park and investigate and I could see the fire was getting progressively worse.

"I had seen the first fire when I had been walking on the seafront."

The burning building at the eastern end of Townwall Street. Picture: Sam Lennon (3020299)
The burning building at the eastern end of Townwall Street. Picture: Sam Lennon (3020299)
The Townwall Street shed fire. Picture: Sam Lennon (3020297)
The Townwall Street shed fire. Picture: Sam Lennon (3020297)

Four fire engines were called to the first blaze.

Crews used hosereel jets to put out the flames and wore breathing apparatus to search the property.

The fire brigade were at the scene until exactly 9.41pm.

KFRS said that four fire engines and a height vehicle were called to the Adrian Stret blaze where flames could be seen coming through the roof.

The fire was on the ground and first floor and crews used hose reels and water from hydrants.

Nearby York Street was closed to traffic but the nearly A20 Townwall Street remained safe enough to be kept open.

Firefighters were at the scene until exactly 10.31pm.

Both incidents had no reported injuries and were also attended by police and South East Coast Ambulance Service.

The nightclub, along with Images in Castle Street, was a popular Dover venue for revellers in the 1990s.

The Adrian Street venue had originally been called Nuage and by the mid-2000s was called Studio One.

This is the third fire in the building, which had two suspected arson attacks in 2003.

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