Liverpool International Horse Show cancelled after blaze at Echo Arena car park
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Liverpool International Horse Show cancelled after blaze at Echo Arena car park

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A fire that destroyed up to 1,400 cars next to the Echo Arena during the Liverpool International Horse Show on New Year’s Eve is believed to have started accidentally, according to police.

The blaze, which began around 4.40pm on 31 December, forced the evacuation of horses from the first floor of the car park into the sports arena.

Liverpool City Council opened a reception centre at Lifestyles Gym for those unable to get home or needing temporary shelter and the fire service said two dogs were rescued from cars but no one was harmed.

The fire started in a Land Rover on the third level of the multi-storey car park and Merseyside Police believe this caused other vehicles to ignite.

A spokeswoman for the Echo Arena said the horse show was cancelled and that "all people and horses are safe and secure".

The four-day event was due to finish with Sunday evening's show, where around 4,000 people were expected.

Last month the Echo Arena was named the main venue for the 2022 World Gymnastics Championships after Liverpool won the bid.

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A fire that destroyed up to 1,400 cars next to the Echo Arena during the Liverpool International Horse Show on New Year’s Eve is believed to have started accidentally, according to police.
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