DOZENS of firefighters tackled a fierce blaze when an old industrial building went up in flames in Sheffield.
A plume of black smoke could be seen billowing into the sky after fire broke out at the old Bridge House building, on Bridge Street.
Around 25 firefighters in five fire engines were called to the scene, along with two aerial appliances.
Onlookers gathered in the street to watch as flames engulfed the top floor of the derelict three-storey building.
The intense heat also caused shards of glass to fall from the windows and smash to the pavement.
Bridge Street was shut for hours while fire crews used water jets to put out the flames and investigated the cause of the blaze.
Eyewitness Christopher Page said he saw the smoke from his home a mile away in Upperthorpe.
“There was thick black smoke coming out and flames shooting up into the air,” he said.
“The fire seemed to dampen down at one point but then started up in another corner.”
One worker at Bridge Street garage Hawley’s Tyres and Exhausts said he had seen a group of youths climb into the area where the fire started.
“A group of skateboarders had been in there,” he said.
“They’ve been in loads of times. I didn’t see them leave but it was about an hour after they went in that we noticed a bit of smoke and then it really started to go up.”
The worker, who didn’t want to be named, added the building had previously attracted drug users, but that the problems stopped once the premises were fenced in.
Fire crews from Sheffield Central, Mansfield Road, Rivelin, Elm Lane and Rotherham stations were all called at 3pm yesterday, and Bridge Street was taped off between its junction with Corporation Street and Plum Lane.
Police also attended, along with ambulances as a precaution.
A thorough search was carried out, but no-one was found inside the building.
Bridge House is due to be redeveloped into premium office space.