UPDATE: Chesterfield homeless hostel blaze 'could have been much worse'

Firefighters outside Hope House yesterday.
Firefighters outside Hope House yesterday.
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The director of a Chesterfield homeless hostel which was engulfed in flames yesterday says a more serious incident was avoided.

Two fire crews from Chesterfield and Clay Cross battled the blaze at Hope House on Derby Road - formerly the Ponderosa Guest House - at about 12noon on Saturday.

The blaze broke out in a fuse box and the building was evacuated.

The base was recently bought by Chesterfield's St Thomas' Church and is currently used to help vulnerable people adjust to life off the streets.

A post on the Hope House Facebook page said the fire was 'quickly detected' and was 'contained' and residents went to St Augustine's Church while firefighters made the building safe.

Reverend Canon Matthew Barnes, director of Hope House Ltd, said: “My first concern was for the safety of the residents, naturally I’m please to see that all are safe and well.

"It appears that all fire protection equipment operated correctly and averted a more serious incident - recent safety checks on the electrical system had been carried out and so the exact cause remains a mystery at this point”.

The Facebook post said the building will not be in use while repairs are carried out due to fire and smoke damage.

Residents have been rehoused locally while work is undertaken.