Owner of shop where Finchley Road fire began tells of his ‘shock’

Fire crews tackle the blaze in Finchley Road. Picture: Polly Hancock

Fire crews tackle the blaze in Finchley Road. Picture: Polly Hancock - Credit: Archant

The co-owner of the shop where the Finchley Road fire began has spoken of his “shock” at losing his business to the blaze.

Firefighters continue to tackle the blaze in Finchley Road. Picture: Shademan Irvanipour

Firefighters continue to tackle the blaze in Finchley Road. Picture: Shademan Irvanipour - Credit: Archant

Fire ripped through PhoneRepairs4U near the o2 shopping centre and the flats above yesterday morning and firefighters are still working hard to put out the flames.

Claudio Gica, who runs the branch along with two others in Golders Green and Kilburn High Road, said: “It is a shock. A lot of hard work has gone.”

He first heard the news yesterday at about 6am, when the shop’s fire alert system notified his co-owner brother about the blaze.

Twenty-five people – including a pregnant woman and her husband – were rescued by the London Fire Brigade yesterday morning as the fire ravaged the terraced block of flats.


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Several have lost all their possessions and homes to the fire, and are now desperately seeking accommodation for tonight.

About 28 hours after firefighters were first called to the scene, they continue to pour water on the smoke-clogged block.

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A community support officer said it would likely be several hours until the smoke was cleared completely.

Finchley Road remains closed between Goldhurst Terrace in South Hampstead and Arkwright Road in Hampstead.

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