Arson probe at burnt-out cottage

WRECKED The smouldering remains of the cottage
WRECKED The smouldering remains of the cottage
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Picture: Shaun Roster/www.shaunroster.com

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ARSON investigators have moved on to the site of a thatched cottage that was ravaged by fire.

The roof of the cottage was destroyed in the blaze in Southleigh Road, Warblington, close to The Avenue Tennis Club.

As reported yesterday, more than 75 firefighters battled the blaze after being called out at 8.45pm on Tuesday.

An arson task force was yesterday examining the cottage as firefighters continued to work making the scene safe.

Officials at Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said it was routine for arson investigators to examine the scene and said they were keeping an open mind as to the cause.

The occupants of the cottage – two adults, a child and two dogs – got out safely, but were not available to talk to The News yesterday. Neighbours felt sad that such a beautiful cottage had been damaged by fire.

Sue Caton, 61, said: ‘There was just so much smoke. It was a lovely old cottage. It’s such a pity.’