Fire crews are still at the scene of a blaze on Mary Street in Lancaster.
Smoke filled the city centre as firefighters rushed to the building opposite the Wilko store.
Police arrived at the scene at around 1pm on Monday (April 3) to assist Lancashire Fire and Rescue and close off Mary Street and Great John Street to the public.
Crowds were told to stand back as the flames spread up into the air.
The fire has ripped through the Nicholas Evans print workshop, Amy’s Tea Shop, the Christian Book Shop and 848 848 Taxis (below the printing shop).
A passerby said: “I am amazed by the slates, they are just buckling, I thought they would be secure.
“It is ironic because I was going to go into Amy’s cafe today. I thought I will go there before my doctor’s appointment.
“I can’t believe the flames, it must be very fierce, we just don’t want an explosion.”
One person has suffered smoke inhalation and has been taken to the Royal Lancaster Infirmary.
Staff from 848 848 Taxis had to be evacuated.
A staff member at 848 said: “It is devastating to see.
“There were two members of staff in there who had to be evacuated.
“I think the building will be condemned.
“It’s our labour of love, this is where the business comes, it is where are main walk-ins are, all our trade.”
More to come.