Pub destroyed by fire was burgled before it was set alight
A REDFIELD pub that was destroyed by fire was burgled before it was set alight, police have revealed.
Detectives are treating the blaze, which left the George and Dragon in Church Road a gutted shell, as arson.
Up to 40 firefighters tackled the blaze at the popular pub, right, after seven crews attended from 1.45am on Monday.
Detective Constable Charlotte Suter said yesterday that the force was appealing for information on the incident.
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She said somebody forced entry into the pub between midnight and 2am on Monday, during which time the fire is thought to have broken out.
The timber roof eventually caved in during the emergency, leaving the structure in need of stabilisation.
Church Road was closed in the rush hour while the final flames were doused but the road remained partially closed through much of the day until deemed safe.
Avon Fire and Rescue Service carried out regular inspections of the property throughout Monday and at 4.20pm were finally able to tackle a small rubbish fire inside the property which they had been unable to reach earlier in the day due to the dangerous condition of the building.
They also worked on damping down pockets of smoke inside the pub. A final inspection was carried out at 10pm on Monday but it was not until yesterday that fire investigators finally accessed the building and completed their investigation into the cause of the blaze to confirm early suspicions that it had been started deliberately.
Avon Fire and Rescue Service spokesman James Bladon said: "It has now been confirmed that the fire was started deliberately."
DC Suter added: "The incident is being treated as suspicious."
Anyone with information should contact the police on 101.