Boss of fire-hit auction room is bidding to get back up and running
A businessman says he will get his popular auction house back up and running - nearly a year after the building was devastated by a huge blaze.
Brian Cairns, the owner of Jarrow Auction Rooms, which was based in a former church on Bede Burn Road, Jarrow, was let heartbroken after a fire tore through the building in November 2017.
Mr Cairns, who has owned the church for four years, is waiting to find out if his insurers will pay out so he can start to repair the building.
He believes it will cost £280,000 to repair, but has temporarily renamed the business South Shields Auction Rooms and is still hosting auctions online.
He said: “I have had builders look at it and they say it will cost £280,000 to put it back together.
“I have had difficulty finding the right premises and think I am in a better position to restore the church.
“I have had a number of people offering to help me set up funding pages until I get insurance money, but I would rather do it off my own back.”
In the meantime, Mr Cairns is keen to hear from anyone who may have a hall or space for the business to use.
“I would love anyone who has a factory unit to give me a call and we could go into partnership with them.
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“I have a fantastic following of over 15,000 people and a great team behind me.”
More than 40 firefighters battled for hours to get the fire under control last November.
Mr Cairns believed he lost £50,000 worth of stock in the fire – including furnishings, wood carvings, cast iron signs and scores of brick-a-brac items.
A Northumbria Police spokeswoman said: “The criminal investigation has been concluded with no evidence of third party involvement.
“If any new evidence comes to light it will be fully investigated.
“Anyone who does want to report anything to police can do so by calling 101 quoting reference 88 24/11/17.”
To contact Jarrow Auction Rooms/South Shields Auction Rooms call: 07940 978855. Alternatively, look up South Shields Auction Rooms on Facebook.