Publicans 'lucky to be alive' after blaze rips through Seahouses pub

A publican has admitted she is ‘lucky to be alive’ after fire ripped through her Seahouses pub.
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The Schooner Inn was extensively damaged in the blaze in the early hours of Tuesday, March 10.

Catherine Gow, who runs the pub with her partner Victor Kukk, admitted: “We are lucky to be alive.

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“My partner woke me up and said there was something wrong and then the alarm went off.

Smoke and fire damage.Smoke and fire damage.
Smoke and fire damage.

“The fire was raging. We just needed to get down the stairs and out of the building as fast as we could.

“We don’t know for sure how much damage there is, but we know it’s bad.

“The storage area for the bar got the worst of it, but there’s also a lot of smoke and water damage to the front.

“It’s going to be months, not weeks, before it can reopen.

The fire damaged store area at The Schooner Inn.The fire damaged store area at The Schooner Inn.
The fire damaged store area at The Schooner Inn.
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“It’s been a huge shock and we’ve lost a lot but, at the end of the day, it’s bricks and mortar and no-one has been hurt.”

The cause of the blaze is under investigation by Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service and Northumbria Police.

“We don’t know yet how it started,” said Catherine, who has had the pub for 15 years.

Neighbours called the fire brigade shortly before 1.30am.

The Schooner Inn, Seahouses.The Schooner Inn, Seahouses.
The Schooner Inn, Seahouses.

Crews from Seahouses, Belford and Alnwick attended the scene at the corner of North Street and Taylor Street.

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Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service attended with its Aerial Ladder Platform, while a response from Northern Powergrid and Northern Gas Networks was also requested.

Additional crews from Alnwick and Berwick were also sent later, while the Seahouses crew returned to spray a special foam on an area of oil in the cellar.

“The fire brigade were here quickly and were marvelous,” said Catherine. “The people in the cottages nearby were really good in making us cups of tea and putting us up.”

A fire crew from Seahouses at the scene.A fire crew from Seahouses at the scene.
A fire crew from Seahouses at the scene.

Neighbouring holiday homes suffered some heat damage, but were vacant at the time.

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The adjacent Black Swan Inn, currently under renovation, suffered only minor damage.

A police spokesperson said there were no injuries, adding: “The property did, however, receive extensive damage, as did neighbouring properties.”