North Woolwich fires: 125 firefighters tackling 17th-floor flat blaze and grass fire by London City Airport

The day after the London Fire Brigade’s busiest day since the Second World War, two blazes have broken out next to London City Airport.

More than 100 firefighters are battling two blazes next to London City Airport, less than 24 hours after the fire brigade’s busiest day since the Second World War.

A four-roomed flat on the 17th floor of a high rise in Manwood Street, North Woolwich, caught fire around 12.49pm, with flames and smoke billowing into the air.

The London Fire Brigade said the blaze spread quickly as the flat was filled with “possessions and clutter”, but firefighters were working to bring the flames under control and the smoke is now subsiding.

Crews are also tackling a grass fire opposite the flat block, at the junction with Silverland Street.

A fire has broken out in a high rise block in North Woolwich and a neighbouring patch of grass. Credit: Stevo

The blazes are metres away from London City Airport on the north bank of the Thames.


Station Commander Keith Sanders said from the scene: “Crews arrived to find a top floor flat alight, which was producing heavy smoke and another fire in the grass area opposite.

“We are using our turntable ladders and drones at the scene to provide an aerial view of an incident to help Incident Commanders develop tactics to bring the fire under control.

“There were a lot of possessions and clutter inside the flat which made it challenging for firefighters.

“It can make fires spread much faster, especially when there are lots of flammable items such as newspapers or cardboard.”

Commander Sanders said there were no reports of any injuries and the cause of the fire was not known.


The LFB said it had taken more than 105 calls about the blaze, and crews from Shadwell, Dowgate, Dockhead and Shoreditch were scrambled to the scene.

Mayor of Newham Rokhsana Fiazsaid: “ I’m with the Newham Council chief executive at the sight of a serious fire incident at Manwood Street in North Woolwich, near London City Airport.

“The Fire Brigade is aware of the incident and will be tackling the blaze.

“Our council resources will be made available as needed.”

The fires are less than 24 hours after the LFB had its busiest day since the Second World War as blazes erupted across the capital in the sweltering weather.

A drone shot of the rubble and destruction in Wennington, Havering, from a huge grass fire yesterday. Credit: Leon Neal/Getty Images


Sixteen brave firefighters were left injured after the carnage, with two taken to hospital, and 41 properties were destroyed.

Instead of the 350 calls crews usually get, the fire service was inundated with more than 2,600 and had to declare a major incident.

In Wennington, Havering, homes were destroyed and farmland was blackened.

More to follow.