A BLAZE under investigation by police and fire experts has destroyed a north Durham factory.

The unit, on Harelaw Industrial Estate, near Stanley, is now considered structurally unsound and is expected to be knocked down.

Firefighters from four crews were called at 10.30pm on Tuesday night after receiving reports of a severe fire.

The heat was so intense the roof has caved in and everything inside has been damaged.

A spokesman for County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service said investigators have been to the site but have not been able to carry out any investigation because the site is too dangerous to enter and the building is structurally unsound.

She said it may have to be knocked down, which would make any investigation ‘very difficult’.

A spokesman for Durham Constabulary said: “No full assessment of the scene has yet been carried out as the unit is deemed structurally unsound, therefore, the cause has yet to be established.

“Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact police at Stanley.”

The force non-emergency number is 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800-555-111.