Greater Manchester’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner has praised the community spirit of Mancunians following the devastating fire at Manchester Dogs’ Home in Harpurhey.
Jim Battle was speaking after visiting the home – the largest outside the capital – and meeting with staff and emergency services workers who were involved in putting the fire out.
Sixty dogs died in the fire, a suspected arson. More than 130 dogs have been rescued and taken to the home’s sister site in Cheshire.
Jim said: “This is a devastating tragedy. Manchester Dogs’ Home has been an institution in the city for more than a century and we are all shocked by these terrible events.
“We can all take pride in the genuine outpouring of community spirit in the aftermath of this fire – we’ve seen the best Greater Manchester on display, not least in the huge sum of money that’s already been raised.
“The staff at the dogs’ home are, of course, distraught at what has happened but their determination to see the centre back up and running as soon as possible is shared by us all.
“I would like to pay tribute to local people and emergency services staff whose actions saved the lives of many dogs. I would call on anyone who has information about this incident to get in touch with police or, anonymously, with Crimestoppers.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
A 15-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of arson and is being questioned by police.
The Manchester Evening News has set up a Just Giving page for people to donate, with all the money going straight to the Manchester Dogs’ Home. You can donate online by visiting https://www.justgiving.com/ManchesterDogsHomeMEN.
You can also donate via your mobile phone by texting MDOG57 followed by £1, £2, £5 or £10 to 70070.
Donations of food and bedding are also welcome. These can be taken to the North Manchester divisional headquarters in Newton Heath, or Christ Church in Harpurhey. Emergency services have asked the public to stay away from Manchester Dogs’ Home as their investigations are ongoing.