Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Photographer Remembers Inferno Horror 40 Years on ; 50 Were Killed in Isle of Man Holiday resortDefinitive' Picture Taken by Holidaymaker

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Photographer Remembers Inferno Horror 40 Years on ; 50 Were Killed in Isle of Man Holiday resortDefinitive' Picture Taken by Holidaymaker

Article excerpt

THE amateur photographer behind this shot of the Isle of Man's Summerland disaster has remembered the fatal inferno, 40 years on.

Fifty people were killed and thousands trapped when flames swept through the island's flagship holiday resort in 1973. Fire safety laws were radically overhauled around the world following the blaze.

Adrian Asshurst, from Little Hulton, was staying nearby with his brothers on that fateful evening.

As a keen amateur photographer he wandered down to the camp - and found utter chaos.

"There was panic," he said.

"People didn't know the way out - it was horrific.

"There were very few telephone lines so people couldn't ring in or out.

"People were being rushed to hospital to give blood. It was chaos, an inferno."

The Douglas holiday village had opened two years before the tragedy, quickly becoming a magnet for north west sunseekers.

Adrian, who was 20 at the time, says he would have been in it himself had the weather been better.

Instead the picture he took was picked up by a press agency - and would come to haunt the Isle of Man authorities. …

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