MMU Student eye-witness account of Oldham paper mill fire

  • Oldam paper mill went up in a blaze this morning
  • 100s of residents had to be evaucated in the early hours of this morning
  • MMU student, Mandy Eshun, has given the NQ her account of the event

Shortly after 4am this morning, a former paper mill in Oldham became engulfed in flames. 

10 fire engines along were called to the incident, with around 80 firefighters and officers arriving at the scene to tackle the fire, involving the four-storey industrial building.

MMU journalism student, Mandy Eshun, whose family lives right next to the former paper mill told us how she was in utter shock of the incident. 

"I never thought this could happen. I was just in shock this morning.

"It was quite scary this morning, there was just so much smoke!" 

oldham fire
Mandy's first-hand experience

Giving us a detailed account of how the event played out in the early hours of the monring, Mandy continued: "I think the fire started around four this morning. My Mum came in asking if I'd left one of my candles burning because she could smell the smoke.

"The Firemen were fantastic. They were so quick to respons, really nice and supportive. 

"Our nextdoor neighbour who's lived here for the past 15 years was also in shock. She couldn't believe it, everyone is just in shock; nobody can believe that this could happen."

Smoke rising from the fire at the former paper mill

Parts of the structure have collapsed and the whole building is engulfed by the fire. Firefighters attacked the fire with jets, pumping water from nearby open water sources and are attacking the fire from the outside of the building.

Area manager Warren Pickstone said: “Crews are working incredibly hard to tackle this fire, when we arrived we were met with a serious fire on the top floor of the mill. 

“We are working hard with our colleagues at the police to protect surrounding properties, about 100 properties in the immediate area have been evacuated.

 “Tyres are also involved in the fire so it’s emitting a thick acrid smoke, we are asking nearby residents to please keep their windows and doors closed as the smoke plume travels across Oldham.”

For live updates on this incident please follow @manchesterfire on Twitter and Instagram or visit