PHOTOS: Police investigate ‘arson’ after a blaze rips through a derelict hotel in Seaton

Police investigating how a blaze ripped through a derelict hotel in Seaton on Monday afternoon believe the fire could be arson.

Devon and Cornwall Police, who are investigating Monday’s ’suspicious’ blaze, want to hear from anyone who may have seen or heard someone in the area at the time who was acting in a way to cause concern.

The police appeal comes as these aerial photos show the devastation left behind at derelict Seaton Heights after the blaze tore through the derelict hotel on Monday afternoon (October 23).

Seaton

Photo: Alfie Waters.

fire

Photo: Alfie Waters

Fire

Photo: Alfie Waters.

The blaze destroyed the derelict hotel.
Photo: Becca Overton.

Seaton

Photographer Becca Overton took this aerial shot after the blaze was out.
Photo: Becca Overton.

A Devon and Cornwall police spokeswoman said: “Police are investigating a suspicious fire within an abandoned building in Seaton yesterday, 23 October.

“Officers were called at 4.50pm by the fire service who were tackling the fire at the former Seaton Heights Hotel on Harepath Hill.

“The building sustained serious damage. No injuries were reported.”

Police said the A3052 was closed in both directions for several hours between Harepath Hill and Seaton Down Hill.

The force spokeswoman added: “Police are treating the incident as arson and appealing to anyone who saw or heard anything suspicious in the area at the time to contact them.”

Seaton

An aerial view of the fire ravaged building.
Photo: Becca Overton.

The overhead images were taken after firefighters from Devon, Somerset and Dorset worked together to bring the blaze under control at the empty two-storey Seaton Heights.

Overnight, crews damped down the site after the blaze was brought under control at teatime on Monday.

fire

Photo: Alfie Waters

arson

Image: Becca Overton.

A Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson said: “Overnight fire crews continued to cool the boundary using an aerial ladder platform, a water wall, and one main jet.

“The incident has been scaled down to three pumps and crews are still damping down.”

 

fire

Photo: Becca Overton.

fire

Photo: Becca Overton

Fire crews from Seaton, Colyton and Lyme Regis were called to the Harepath Hill area of Sidmouth at around 4.30pm on Monday.

Shortly after water carriers from Bridport and Torquay and firefighters from Ottery St Mary, Sidmouth and Exeter were on scene, tackling the blaze.

Some two hours after the blaze was first reported, nine fire engines with crews were on site, plus a specialist decontamination unit was set up.

The blaze was brought under control at around 6.30pm, the fire service said.

A DSFRS spokesperson said: “Officers in charge of the incident made a further request for additional pumps making the total up to nine pumping appliances on scene, and also the Environmental Protection Unit was mobilised to provide decontamination for firefighters on scene.

“The fire service drone was also requested to provide additional visibility on the scene to improve firefighting decision making and situational awareness.”

fire

Photo: Alfie Waters

DSFRS said a controlled burn started at around 8.30pm in a bid to allow the blaze to reach a natural break, before crews continued to extinguish any further fire.

The blaze was tackled by crews based at Tiverton, Ivybridge, Torquay, Danes Castle and Middlemoor both in Exeter, plus Axminster, Colyton, Honiton, Ottery St Mary, Seaton, Sidmouth, Clyst St George, all in East Devon, also Somerset crews were sent from Wellington, Chard, Ilminster and Martock.

If you saw or heard anything suspicious , and can help police, report it online or by telephone on 101, quoting crime reference 50230282022.

Police warn of ‘aggressive and intimidating’ cold-callers in Seaton and an East Devon village

 

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