A HUGE blaze ripped through a car wash and tyre shop, destroying several vehicles.

Six appliances were called to the Alpha Works building, which houses a garage, Sparkles Car Wash and a tyre shop, in Lower Hollin Bank Street, Blackburn, on Saturday morning.

More than 30 firefighters used an aerial ladder platform to tackle the fire from above and spent most of the day at the scene damping down the area.

Police were also on the scene with road closures in place for most of the morning.

Fire crews had to pump water from the nearby canal to battle the fire.

Watch manager Rob Birtwistle, from Blackburn Fire Station, said: “The fire started in the garage and as we arrived they were getting the cars out of the premises. They got some of the vehicles nearest the door out but some were destroyed by the fire.

“The fire also spread to a neighbouring car valeting unit and we managed to prevent it spreading to another building at the rear of the premises.

“As well as the vehicles, large sections of the roofs of the building have also been badly damaged.

“We do not know the cause of the fire at the moment. Our incident intelligence unit is investigating.”

Shaukat Bashir, who owns the building with his family, said: “We sublet one unit to the car wash and are in the process of establishing the tyre place as our own business.

“We got a call from police at around 8.30am to say that the building was on fire. They have no idea at the moment how the fire started. We have to wait and see what they say.”