Devon and Cornwall Police has asked the public to appreciate the scale and severity of the fire which has affected buildings on Exeter’s Cathedral Green – and to carefully consider their travel plans by car or public transport to Exeter’s city centre. This comes from their website:
There will also be disruption to walking routes, and police ask the public to respect the cordons that have been put in place for their safety and to allow the fire service to work efficiently. The public cannot for the time being enter or get closer to the Cathedral Green.
Representatives from Devon and Somerset Fire & Rescue Service, Devon and Cornwall Police and from Exeter City Council issued a new joint statement this morning (Saturday 28th October) about the situation on Cathedral Green, which you can watch in the video.
Joe Hassel, Group Manager for Devon and Somerset Fire and rescue Service, explained how fire service personnel have been dealing with the extensive fire in the hotel, and their pledge to work tirelessly to return the area to normal as soon as possible.
Exeter City Council was represented by Chief Executive Karime Hassan and Leader of the Council Cllr Peter Edwards who explained how they are working with businesses and the emergency services towards bringing normality back to the affected area of the city centre as soon as possible. They also reminded the public that beyond the affected area, the rest of the city is open for business.
Assistant Chief Constable Paul Netherton said: “The key objective for police is to make sure that members of the public are safe.
“At the same time, we need to make sure that Exeter continues to function. We are reviewing the situation regularly to make sure that we are not putting anyone at risk.”
Road closures are in place at the junctions of High Street and South Street, of South Street and the Cathedral Green, on Queen Street at the rear end of Tesco, on North Street at the Iron Bridge end, on Musgrave Road, and on Bedford Square at the junction with High Street.
There are further cordons on the cathedral side of Cathedral Green on the approach from Southernhay on the Cathedral Close footpath and also near to the cathedral gardens. Cathedral Green will remain cordoned off and is not accessible to the public while the fire service completes its work.
Police remain in attendance on the cordons and road closures to keep the public safe and allow the fire service to work efficiently.
Police were alerted by the fire service at 5.20am on Friday 28th October to a large fire affecting ‘The Gallery’ building on Cathedral Green in Exeter.
The Royal Clarence Hotel was evacuated as a precaution, and all staff and residents were accounted for. The fire then spread to the hotel which has been very badly damaged. It is not known at this time how the fire started.
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