NORTH Avon Magistrates' Court is closed today after a fire broke out in the early hours of this morning.

Flames were seen at 3.28am at the court on Kennedy Way.

Two crews from Yate attended the scene and used high pressure hose reels to put out the blaze which affected the entrance porch and canopy.

Avon Fire and Rescue Service spokesman James Bladon said: "The fire just affected the outside of the building.

"Crews then gained entry to check the fire had not travelled inside the building."

No-one was inside the court at the time and no-one was injured.

A court spokeswoman said the court has been closed for all cases today (Thursday, May 22) and new dates were being determined for hearings.

Staff, solicitors and defendants are still arriving at the court this morning.

The Ministry of Justice told the Gazette the fire was a matter for the police. A spokesman said some cases may be dealt with elsewhere.

Police and fire officers are investigating the cause of the blaze.

Windows are in the process of being replaced at the building, which is in a central location opposite Yate Shopping Centre.

Did you see the fire? Did you hear the fire engines arrive? Call us on 01453 544000.