DEMOLITION work has begun on a Yate warehouse ravaged by fire eight weeks ago.

A blaze broke out AJM Pet Products in the Beeches Industrial Estate on October 24, and the building has been smouldering and periodically reigniting ever since.

Firefighters remained at the scene until October 30, returning to the warehouse several times to deal with flare-ups.

But because the building had become unsafe fire crews weren’t able to enter it, and so used a high-pressure hose from outside the building instead.

This method has had limited success due to the large amount of debris on top of the smouldering residues, which has prevented water from reaching the entrenched hot spots.

But now it seems the end is in sight.

A spokesman for Cushman and Wakefield, which manages the estate, said: “Demolition contractors have been appointed and began work on Monday (December 11).

“Priority has been given to achieving safe access to douse the smouldering materials in Unit 49, and this should be completed either this week or next week.

“In total, work is scheduled to last eight weeks.

“We thank all concerned for their patience.”

This news has been welcomed by people living and working nearby, who have complained that the smoke emitting from the site is making their clothes smell and is potentially a public health hazard.

Tony Morgan, who works on the industrial estate, said: “It’s been pretty uncomfortable and unpleasant around here.

“Everyone goes home smelling of smoke.

“Our clothes smell of smoke, our cars smell of smoke. One of my colleague’s dogs even smells of smoke.

“He told me he went home and his clothes stank, so he chucked them on the floor. The dog then laid down on the clothes for a nap and later on it stank of smoke too.”

Mr Morgan, who is a director at RHC Lifting Ltd, added: “The council advised us to stay indoors, but we work in an old building and it’s not air tight, so we’re exposed to the smoke anyway.

"Sometimes you can look across workshop and see a haze of smoke across the building.

“On one occasion it was so bad in the workshop that we told everyone to go home.”

A council spokesman said: “Health advice from Public Health England (PHE) remains the same.

"Given the reportedly intermittent nature of the odours PHE does not consider that the current exposure is likely to pose a significant risk to health.

"However it is always sensible to minimise exposure and as a general precaution we advise local residents to minimise their time spent outdoors in areas affected by the smoke.

"If anyone affected by the odour believes they are experiencing symptoms as a result of their exposure, they should seek medical advice, particularly if they have existing underlying health conditions such as asthma or other chronic chest conditions."