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Page last updated at 11:03 GMT, Tuesday, 9 March 2010
Archive footage of Henderson's fire in Liverpool
Henderson's
The building on Church Street, Liverpool was completely destroyed

Previously unseen footage of a fire at the prestigious Liverpool department store Henderson's has been broadcast on BBC Inside Out.

In June 1960 a huge fire ripped through the store Henderson's in Church Street, killing 11 people.

There had been no practice fire drills, no fire alarm and at first the fire brigade wasn't called straight away.

The tragic events led to changes in the law regarding safety in public buildings.

Watch the 8 March edition of Inside Out.

It was a hot June day and doors throughout the store had been wedged open, which also helped the fire to spread.

Fire Brigade Historian, Simon Ryan, explains how people were unprepared.

"People did what they thought was the right thing to try and fight the fire.

"It was a combination as with all disasters, of the construction of the building, the fact that it was old, the fact that nobody thought it was going to happen to them.

"They tried fight the fire themselves for about five minutes and those five minutes were crucial."

Henderson's was eventually rebuilt and continued to trade. Today the site is occupied by clothing store H&M.

The cause of fire was determined to be an electrical fault but, despite a lengthy inquiry, and as most evidence was destroyed in the blaze, no-one was ever prosecuted.




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