Smoke from light fitting forces evacuation of posh new Manchester hotel

Smoke from a light fitting set off emergency alarms and forced the evacuation of a posh new art deco hotel in Manchester last month.

'The light fitting had overheated,' a spokesperson for the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service told Lux. Fire crews searched the five-star Hotel Gotham and found 'no sign of fire,' she said.

The Manchester Evening News reported that guests and staff could not re-enter the 60-bedroom, seven-story hotel until the emergency team had ventilated all the smoke.

Neither the fire service nor the hotel would reveal to Lux what sort of light fitting had overheated, and wheher it was, for example, a modern LED, an incandescent or halogen lamp, or something else.

'Unless the fire was serious and involved our fire investigation team we wouldn’t actually record that level of detail unless it was required for a report,' the fire brigade spokesperson said.

A Gotham spokesperson said the hotel did not want to discuss the incident, which she described as 'resolved.' She also said that 'it was not caused by a light bulb,' a statement that clashes with the fire service's explanation to both Lux and the Manchester Evening News.

Lux is continuing to ask both parties for more details.

The Hotel Gotham opened in early April in a converted 1930s bank building. It promotes style, sultriness, and indeed, smokiness - the video on its website depicts a dark, jazzy downstairs room full of cigar puffing, card playing, old style gangster and floozy types  (click 'showtime' in the upper right-hand drop down menu on the hotel's website).

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Photo is from Alastair Wallace via Shutterstock