Fire-hit Wolverhampton bowling alley Strykers is reduced to rubble

It welcomed thousands of families through its doors but after being ravaged in an arson attack a landmark bowling alley has now been pulled to the ground.

Fire-hit Wolverhampton bowling alley Strykers is reduced to rubble

Only the flattened remains, including a name sign are left of Strykers Bowling Alley in Wolverhampton after diggers moved onto the site in the wake of last month's fire.

The blaze gutted the Bushbury attraction on December 23 causing part of the building to collapse.

At its peak 100 firefighters from across the Black Country and Birmingham were brought in to help keep it under control.

The fire also shut surrounding roads for around 24 hours as smoked billowed out from the wreckage.

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  • Bulldozers move in on Wolverhampton Strykers site

One firefighter suffered minor injuries to his ankle while tackling the fire and had to be taken to hospital as a precaution.

Diggers moved onto the Shaw Road site earlier this month as they began the process of demolishing the venue which had closed several months prior the fire.

The building's owner Sam Samra, from Lower Penn, said he felt it was too early to say what the future of the land will hold.

He added: "I haven't had time to think about the fire at all yet.

"Maybe in a month I may have an idea."

Councillor for Bushbury South and Low Hill Paul Sweet said he would like to see the land redeveloped.

He added: "It is upsetting when any landmark is knocked down but I'm glad the owner had it demolished it rather than let it become a blight on the landscape.

"Strykers was well used and brought a lot of people to Bushbury.

"I'd like to see the site developed as an opportunity for the community possible as factory units or something else which will create job opportunities.

"That part of Bushbury Lane and Shaw Lane is quite an industrial area so it would fit in."

A new KFC takeaway restaurant is currently being built near to the site of the old bowling alley on land which used to house Bushbury Working Men's club.

Once open it will create 40 new jobs for the area.

A police investigation into the blaze is ongoing. West Midlands Police announced the blaze was being treated as arson a day after the fire.

The force say the investigation is on going and there are yet to be any arrests.

Just days after the fire at the bowling alley and another landmark site in Bushbury was torched.

This time it was the Bushbury Arms on Showell Circus on December 27. On that occasion arsonists had broken into the disused pub and set the bar area alight. Although both fires were treated as arson police say they are not thought to be connected.

Strykers, which was run by Kent-based Garland Leisure Ltd, closed suddenly in October leaving customers who had booked functions upset at being left in the dark.

It was a target for metal thieves the day after it emerged it had closed. Thieves had caused thousands of pounds worth of damage by removing water tanks and copper piping. Two men aged 19 and 20 were arrested nearby on suspicion of burglary.

Kent based Garland Leisure Ltd were criticised in October by customers when Strykers closed without notification.

One customer Ms Audrey Smalling had booked a party at the venue for 320 people to celebrate her 60th birthday.

Ms Smalling from Coventry Street, Wolverhampton, had placed a deposit of £100 down but claimed the company was not answering her calls. The Express & Star was unable to contact the firm.

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