Haven Bridge pub had been unregistered HMO days before blaze

Haven Bridge pub

Scaffolding was put up around the Haven Bridge pub on Friday morning. - Credit: James Weeds

A pub that caught fire in Great Yarmouth on Wednesday had been used as an unregistered home of multiple occupancy days before the building caught fire, it has been revealed.

The former Haven Bridge pub - most recently named The Haven - caught fire at around 8pm on Wednesday. Although the fire was tackled within a couple of hours, the pub's roof was destroyed with only charred timbers visible through shattered windows.

Fire fighters check for hot spots at the Haven Bridge pub on Bridge Road in Great Yarmouth after the

Fire fighters check for hot spots at the Haven Bridge pub on Bridge Road in Great Yarmouth after the fire. - Credit: Denise Bradley

On Friday, Great Yarmouth Borough Council (GYBC) said that the building had recently been used as an unregistered house of multiple occupation and officers from Norfolk Fire and Rescue had served a prohibition notice on it.

In a combined statement from GYBC, Norfolk Police and Norfolk Fire and Rescue, a council spokesperson said: "The council became aware in early March that parts of the Haven Bridge pub building were being used as an unregistered house of multiple occupation.

"This means that it was being lived in by several occupants from different households that share communal areas such as kitchens and bathrooms. Where more than five people live in it, this type of accommodation is required to be registered with the local council and meet certain quality standards.

"Working jointly with Norfolk Fire Service we inspected the property, leading to the fire service serving a prohibition notice requiring that use to stop."

The spokesperson said the council provided help to eight occupants to find alternative places to stay.

A hydraulic platform tackles the Haven Bridge pub fire

Firefighters tackle the blaze from a hydraulic platform at the former Haven Bridge pub in Great Yarmouth - Credit: Archant

The fire service confirmed that nobody was hurt as a result of the blaze. A spokesperson said: "All persons believed to be living in the Haven Bridge pub building have now been accounted for."

As of Friday morning, scaffolding had been installed around the pub.

A council spokesperson added: "The cause of the fire and any other activity at the property will be looked at as part of further investigations once the initial safety work on the structure has been completed."

Traffic by Fuller's Hill

Traffic was almost at a standstill by Fuller's Hill roundabout on Friday morning. - Credit: James Weeds

Also as of Friday morning, Haven Bridge remained closed to traffic in both directions with one path open for pedestrians and cyclists. The road closure resulted in traffic jams across Great Yarmouth and Gorleston.

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The council has confirmed that current plans to re-open the roads on Friday afternoon were still on track.

Road Closed sign by Haven Bridge.

Haven Bridge remained closed in both directions on Friday morning. - Credit: James Weeds