PEOPLE from around York have descended on a local theatre today (Sunday) to offer help after a fire tore through the company's sets and props last night.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said the blaze was reported around 7pm last night at the farm business units, Moor Farm, off Moor Lane, Murton.

Six fire crews were called to bring the fire under control - but the blaze managed to consume props and sets belonging to the Rowntree Players theatre company.

The fire service added that it will be attending the site today (Sunday) to establish the cause.

A spokesman for Rowntree's Players said that more than half the company's sets and props have been damaged and that they will have to search for a new panto store.

Writing on social media, Rowntree Players wrote: "A fire has devastated our Panto store. This is devastating news for us and a long and expensive job ahead so please give your time generously.

"There is no power and it is wet and dirty so please come warmly dressed in clothes suitable to a very mucky task.

"We are also now looking for a new home for Rowntree Players props, set and tools so if you have any contacts who may be able to help we need a large unit in the York area."

At least six fire crews responded to the blaze which did so much damage to their storage unit. Yorkshire Water tweeted that the amount of water used was causing low water pressure in the area.

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said: "Crews from Huntington, York, Acomb, Selby, Tadcaster and Scarborough were mobilised to a report of a fire in an industrial building containing a number of separate units. Fire, heat and smoke damage to the main unit, flatbed truck, roof and adjacent units.

"Crews used two ground monitors, one large jet, and one hose reel, thermal imaging camera, and two breathing apparatus. The incident remains open for a revisit this morning by a Fire Investigation Officer to establish the cause"

The theatre group paid tribute to the fire service, saying: "Tonight a terrible fire spread into the Rowntree Players' store causing a huge amount of damage and destroying significant amounts of our precious sets, props, tools and guttered pantomime necessities.

"Rowntree Players would like to thank the amazing fire crews for their fantastic work in bringing the fire under control and salvaging everything they could. Utter professionals in a dangerous and overwhelming situation.

"Luckily nobody has been hurt and Rowntree Players will rise from the ashes. As ever the show must go on."