Property in Derry badly damaged in fire - Cooper

Sinn Fein Councillor Mickey Cooper. (file pic)
Sinn Fein Councillor Mickey Cooper. (file pic)

Builders are expected to assess the structure of a large vacant house in Derry today following a fire overnight.

The house, situated at the top of Northland Avenue, had been accessed by groups of youths involved in anti-social behaviour over recent months, despite several rounds of works to secure the property and deter them from entering.

The main road through the Rosemount area was closed off last night as fire-fighters dealt with the blaze. Commenting during the incident overnight, local Sinn Féin Councillor Mickey Cooper said he and colleague party Hayleigh Fleming had been in talks with residents for the past seven months over the incidents and following inquiries have also been in communication with the owners.

He said the relatives of the home owner have made every effort to secure the property.

He said: “I and my party colleague Hayleigh Fleming have been working privately with the relatives of the owner for a number of months to try resolve the issue of small groups of young people entering and using the property to carry out anti-social behaviour.

“On each occasion the owner’s relatives got the property secured.

“I have spoken to the relatives who are on site with the Fire Service and they have told me the builders are coming in the morning to ensure the property is structurally sound.”