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Fire ravages 19th Century French basilica
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Fire ravages 19th Century French basilica

15.06.2015 From our online archive
A spectacular blaze ravaged the roof of a 19th Century basilica in western France on Monday, causing major damage but no injuries, authorities said.

(AFP) A spectacular blaze ravaged the roof of a 19th Century basilica in western France on Monday, causing major damage but no injuries, authorities said.

The fire in Nantes is "probably linked to waterproofing work that was taking place on the roof," said the city's chief fire officer, who added the blaze had been "contained" by mid-morning.

Some 60 firefighters attacked the inferno at the basilica Saint-Donatien, which broke out around 10.45am. Two workers on the roof when the blaze broke out were left unhurt.

The back part of the basilica has been seriously damaged and some of the wooden beams have given way, authorities said.

Firefighters are now scrambling to save some of the precious objects inside the basilica, notably the organ.