Furore over ‘hipster’ fire tweet

The fire in Great Eastern Street, photo @LondonFire

The fire in Great Eastern Street, photo @LondonFire - Credit: Archant

The London Fire Brigade’s press office became the subject of news rather than the fire at the pop-up restaurant the emergency services put out, after a tweet about hipsters was branded insensitive and went viral.

Around half of the building in Great Eastern Street occupied by Street Feast’s Dinerama was damaged by the blaze in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The brigade was called just before 4am – four hours after the licensed venue in Shoreditch closed - and 35 fire fighters using six engines took just over two hours to put out the blaze.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Afterwards the London Fire Brigade announced on Twitter that “no hipsters were injured” in the fire, which provoked a mixed response on the social media website, with some accusing the brigade of being insensitive.

Jonathan Downey said: Not funny. Not funny at all, “ while Pete Carrier replied: “Hey! Are you worried that Met Police Helecopter (sic) are getting all the attention?” Pop-up burrito stallholders from Killer Tomato tweeted: “Why don’t you delete this bad taste tweet? Some people have lost their livelihoods.”

But Thomas Knight retorted: “Making light of a bad situation isn’t reason to be offended. Christ, people are so dour.”

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The Dinerama market which was home to six sit-down restaurants, as well as “street shacks,” food trucks, and bars underwent extensive damage in the blaze.

On their website Dinerama said: “Dinerama will not be open today or for the time being. It will take us a few weeks to get up and running again but we will be soon.

We will be helping all of our talented and hard-working traders to get back into business quickly.”

A spokesman for the London Fire Brigade apologised for the tweet on Sunday night.

“We’re always looking at engaging ways to inform the public and give life saving fire safety advice but on this occasion we fell short.

“We hope businesses affected by the fire are back on their feet soon.”