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Victoria’s oldest Greek Orthodox church damaged by fire

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02 May 2016
Victoria’s oldest Greek Orthodox church has been damaged by fire this afternoon.

Firefighters were called to The Holy Annunciation of Our Lady on Victoria Parade in East Melbourne at 1.41pm.

The fire was reported to Triple Zero by passing police who saw smoke pouring from the church windows and roof.

As the church is located just a block from Eastern Hill Fire Station firefighters arrived on scene within minutes, and quickly mounted an external attack.

Firefighters had to force entry to the church, where they continue to battle the fire wearing breathing apparatus.

Approximately 200 people were evacuated from neighbouring buildings.

Members of the Greek community, who celebrated Greek Easter this past weekend, arrived on scene.

The fire was brought under control in just under half an hour, with crews managing to limit the amount of damage caused by the blaze.

A building surveyor is on scene assessing the structural integrity of the church and firefighters will use thermal imaging cameras to ensure all hot spots have been extinguished.

Traffic inbound on Victoria Parade has been affected and motorists are urged to avoid the area.

About a dozen appliances attended the incident.

The cause will be investigated.

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