Cattle market back to 'business as usual' despite fierce blaze
A livestock market in Devon will be back to "business as usual" by the end of the week despite a fire which destroyed part of the building.
More than 30 firefighters tackled the blaze at Hatherleigh Cattle Market which broke out early yesterday morning.
Police are investigating the cause of the fire, which tore through a single-office and holding pens and was finally put out at just after 5.40am.
The owners, Vicks, confirmed that asbestos contained in the building would be stripped out in accordance with safety rules.
NEW FROM SYMPLY - a wet dog food in a tray freshly steamed with real meat and veg you can see minimum of 68% meat content up to 72% in the adult trays.
Terms: Come and try tray at introductory price of £1
Contact: 01271 440626
Valid until: Friday, January 31 2014
But despite the fire, less than 10% of a block of single storey offices was severely damaged as well as a sheep holding pen.
Simon Whattler, of the National Farmers' Union, who visited the site on Monday, said the blaze had been confined to offices and a holding area and should have little effect.
"Looking at the damage I think they will be able to use the majority of the pens, and by Thursday they will be up and running," he added.
"It should be business as usual by the end of the week."
Three fire crews from Okehampton and Hatherleigh were sent to the scene after the fire service received several calls reporting cattle sheds in Lairage Field on fire shortly after 3.35am.
The fire was so strong that crews asked for support from two more crews from North Tawton and Torrington as well as the incident command vehicle, an appliance from Ilfracombe and an aerial ladder platform from Barnstaple.
West Devon Borough Council said: "The council's Environmental Health Team liaised with the fire service following the discovery of asbestos during the incident but did not need to visit the site.
"The council has been informed that the owner of the market has arranged for the asbestos to be cleared up and disposed of in line with regulations."