Families home after Norwich flat blaze

More than 20 people forced to move after a blaze in a Norwich tower block have returned home, but a further 23 will have to wait before they can go back.

About 80 firefighters were called to Markham Tower in Mile Cross, on Monday, September 26, after a fire broke out in an eighth-floor flat.

Nobody was hurt but it left one flat badly damaged and at least 10 flats with water damage, while all the tower's electricity had to be turned off.

The people living in the 44-flat tower block, in Bowers Avenue, have since been moved to hotels or are staying with friends or family.

But yesterday 21 tenants were allowed back home.

However, a dozen tenants have been told the work to their homes will take between two to four more weeks.

They have been offered temporary accommodation from the council's housing stock and two have moved in already.

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The other 10 will stay in a hotel or with friends and family until their temporary properties are ready.

Eleven more people face a shorter wait.

Seven will not be able to move back in until Monday because their electricity meters need to be reset, while four more need other electric work doing before they can return, scheduled for next week.

Brenda Arthur, leader of Norwich City Council, said: 'I am delighted we have been able to take very quick and efficient action to ensure people can get back into their homes.

'We will continue to do what we can to ensure the building is safe and secure and get everyone living where they want to be as quickly as we can.'

She thanked tenants for their patience and said the council's insurance would cover the cost of the temporary accommodation.

Were you affected by the fire? Call Evening News reporter Dan Grimmer on 01603 772375 or email dan.grimmer@archant.co.uk