A CLEAN up operation is to be carried out at a North-East aerospace factory after a major fire.

Emergency services were called Gardner Aerospace in Consett at 2.15pm on Thursday and part of Number One Industrial Estate were evacuated and cordoned off.

A fire investigation is underway but it is believed the blaze started in an extraction system.

On Friday morning, no-one was being allowed to enter the large factory unit where the fire started.

Kenny Worth, chief operating officer Gardner Aerospace, said: “The most important thing is that nobody was hurt or injured as a result of the fire which appears to have started in an external part of one of the building’s extraction systems.

“All major plant and equipment plus the office areas appear to be largely undamaged with exposure to smoke being the main issue.

“Specialist clean up teams are already lined up to start dealing with the smoke damage which they will do as soon as the fire brigade gives permission for any personnel to enter the premises.”