Magpie fish and chip cafe badly damaged in second blaze in 24 hours

FAMOUS Whitby fish and chip cafe The Magpie looks set to be closed for the start of the busy summer season after being badly damaged in a second blaze within 24 hours.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 1st May 2017, 7:18 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 7:04 pm
Photo: Ceri Oakes
Photo: Ceri Oakes

The roof of the popular cafe on Pier Road has been almost completely destroyed in a blaze this (Mon May 1) afternoon.

Eight fire engines had been called to deal with a blaze in the roof space at the Magpie cafe at 10.15pm on Sunday night and an investigation had been underway into the cause of that blaze.

Five fire crews were called to the scene of the second blaze after flames were spotted leaping from the roof of the Magpie Cafe just after 3.30pm this afternoon.

Ceri Oakes, a freelance photographer from Whitby, said: "I was covering the fire on Sunday night and then today I was walking past on Pier Road and everyone was stood watching.

"There were flames billowing out of the roof. It was a sunny Bank Holiday Monday and the streets were full of people.

"The whole town was at a standstill with people just watching because nobody could believe what they were seeing, that it was on fire again.

"The roof was destroyed. A large part of the roof is completely gone. Everyone is absolutely gutted for the people that work there because it's the start of a busy season for them and it's going to have a big impact."

Photo: Ceri Oakes

A total of eight fire engines from the surrounding area attended Sunday night's incident, included a high reach aerial ladder platform from Scarborough fire station and a crew from Middlesbrough.

Crews used breathing apparatus and fire fighting equipment to extinguish the fire. No people were injured as a result of Sunday night's fire.

Fire investigation officers started an inspection of the premises at the time of the fire last night and the investigation had been continuing today.

Five fire crews from Whitby, Lythe, Robin Hoods Bay, Danby and Scarborough along with the aerial ladder platform from Scarborough, were caled to deal with this afternon's blaze.

Photo: Ceri Oakes

One jet, two breathing apparatus and a water tower were used to extinguish the blaze..

The Magpie Cafe had posted a mesage on its Facebook page before the second blaze this afternoon. The message read: "Business as usual at a very busy Magpie takeaway.

"Again, thank you for all your messages of help and support - we really appreciate it and hope you'll understand if we don't reply to you all individually!

"Within the next day or two we hope to be able to give you an update on when the restaurant will reopen.

Photo: Ceri Oakes

"Thanks again from all the team at The Magpie Cafe.

"We can confirm, most importantly, everyone is okay and no one was hurt. Thank you to North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service and the emergency services for their assistance.

"We're down there now surveying the damage and will put out a statement when we know more. In the meantime, thank you all for your kind messages."

Messages of support for the restaurant, which is among Britain's top fish and chip eateries, have flooded in on social media.

Jayne Taylor said: "Shocked to see photo. Relieved no one injured. Hope you are soon up and running. We eat with you often when visiting Whitby, the food and service is always excellent. Best Wishes to all!"

While another diner, Sue Henshaw, said: "Our favourite place to eat when in Whitby once a year. I hope you can soon repair the damage. So glad that everyone is ok. We will be looking forward to our fish pie and prawn salad when you are up and running again."

Photo: Ceri Oakes