Journalists attending the Regional Press Awards at a hotel in Mayfair were evacuated half-way through the ceremony on Friday (May 15) after a fire scare. had to leave the building midway through following a fire scare.
The main course was just about to be served during the event, at the Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel, when a fire alarm sounded.
Guests there included Trinity Mirror Southern Editor-in-Chief Marnie Wilson, and photographer Chris Whiteoak, who was nominated for an award.
They were evacuated and forced to wait outside with hundreds of other journalists and watch on as five fire engines descended on the hotel.
The event was eventually relocated to a nearby hotel.
Ms Wilson said a few awards had been handed out and starters eaten when they had to abruptly leave. She told getwestlondon: “They started to bring the main course out and the fire alarm went off and everyone had to get out. We’ve been standing about for an hour-and-a-half.
“It has got to be a disaster when you have hundreds of journalists in the room and you have to evacuate the place for fire.”
Mr Whiteoak said he saw no smoke or flames, adding: “There wasn’t a mad panic, we were just asked to leave and everybody left. I couldn’t smell or see anything.”
At around 3pm the guests were moved to Grosvenor House Hotel in Park Lane, before returning to the Marriott Grosvenor Square Hotel for the awards to continue.
On Twitter, the Brigade said the fire, which had caused damage to part of a lift motor room, had been brought under control.