What you had to say on the Wesley Building blaze

A 1998 picture of hundreds of youngsters gathered outside the former Wesley nightclub, in Hartlepool, before one of the venue's popular junior discos.
A 1998 picture of hundreds of youngsters gathered outside the former Wesley nightclub, in Hartlepool, before one of the venue's popular junior discos.

Hartlepool residents have reacted with sadness at the news that the town's historic Wesley Building has gone up in flames.

The fire swept through the former church and nightclub at around 8:30pm on Saturday night, with flames seen around 20ft above the roof.

Flames seen around 20ft above the roof.

Flames seen around 20ft above the roof.

Two appliances from Stranton and a hydraulic platform from Saltburn were initially called in to tackle the blaze and at its height five fire engines were called to the scene along with a command control unit, two hydraulic platforms and a welfare unit.

During the incident Victoria Road and Wesley Square were closed and people were advised to avoid the area.

On Sunday crews returned to the scene at 8.20am after the roof collapsed.

The magnificent Wesley Church opened in 1872 and served the community of Hartlepool for just over a century before it closed as in 1973.

Fire crews tackle the blaze at Wesley Building.

Fire crews tackle the blaze at Wesley Building.

It was later converted into a nightclub but has been disused for some time.

Residents had many memories of the building in its heyday and expressed sadness following the blaze.

Barbara Duffy said: "One of the best structures in the North East has gone up in smoke!"

Paulndebz Hunter added: "I remember going to carol services outside the Wesley with a massive Christmas tree all lit up with my mam and dad and siblings.

During the incidentVictoria Road and Wesley Square were closed and people were advised to avoid the area.

During the incidentVictoria Road and Wesley Square were closed and people were advised to avoid the area.

"It was magical when I was a kid, so it is such a shame.

"It would have made a great arts and crafts centre for small businesses."

Joseph Humphries commented: "I feel like my childhood home has burnt down."

Tommy Prosser added: "My mother and father married there in April 1942."

Rachael Robinson said: "So sad as beautiful building. Had some great nights there."

Ann Walsh commented: "This should be rebuilt and saved."

Jacqui de Lorme added: "So much history."