Cheshire Cat Pub fire likely electrical, officials say
West Ottawa pub to keep stone structure, looks to rebuild in same building
The fire that destroyed the Cheshire Cat Pub in far west Ottawa was likely electrical, according to evidence from Ottawa fire officials.
The pub at 2193 Richardson Side Rd. was "completely gutted," according to its owner Dustin Therrien, after a fire in the early morning of Jan. 28.
The fire spread quickly in the stone building and firefighters were forced to fight it from the outside for more than eight hours before it was extinguished.
Therrien told CBC News at the time the pub was a "write-off" and everything would have to be rebuilt.
The insurance adjuster assigned to the pub fire has told officials the cause of the blaze is "undetermined" but evidence was consistent with an electrical fire in the northeast area of the bar.
Some of 36 employees hired elsewhere
The pub's 36 employees were going to lose their jobs, but some other local pubs have stepped forward and hired some of those workers, according to the Cheshire Cat Pub's Twitter account.
Those pubs included Wellington Gastropub, Big Rig Kitchen & Brewery and Ashton Brew Company.
On Monday, the pub also tweeted it would be able to keep the stone structure as it tries to salvage some of the charred remnants inside.
From 1883 to 1956, the structure was a schoolhouse. In the 1990s, what had become a rural residence was converted to a restaurant and bar. Therrien purchased the Cheshire Cat Pub in 2005 and it continued to be a popular gathering spot that employed 36 people.
Nobody was inside the building at the time of the fire, firefighters said.
The total damage was estimated at $700,000, but firefighters also managed to retrieve some items from the building for Therrien.