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Full report: Police hunt for arsonist

Homes had to be evacuated and three teams of firefighters were callled to battle a blaze that appears to be the latest in a series of grass fires deliberately set alight in Dumfries and Galloway.

Some of the residents who were led from their homes were in their seventies, as large flames came within just a few feet of properties.

Police say the fire near Sanquhar is one of eight suspicious grass fires in the past six days.

Matthew Taylor has this report:

'Fire came within feet of garden' says Kelloholm resident

The fire came within feet of the garden Credit: Meg Alison

Ten homes had to be evacuated in Kelloholm, in Dumfries and Galloway, after a grass fire came within a few feet of residents' gardens.

Many of those evacuated were people over the age of 70.

One resident described it as "an inferno" and said "it was a very frightening experience".

The burnt out grass near Kelloholm Credit: ITV News Border

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New fire, hunt continues

Police in the Sanquhar area are stepping up their hunt for a suspected arsonist after a sixth grass fire in the space of four days.

The latest was in Queen's Road, Sanquhar on Saturday 30th March. None have yet caused serious damage but officers still suspect that it is the same person setting them.

A Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue spokesman said:

“The fires were all put out by the firefighters using beaters and hoses. The causes of the fires have been put down as suspected to be deliberate by an unknown person or persons.”

– Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue spokesman

Sanquhar fires were deliberately set

Firefighters from Sanquhar in Upper Nithsdale have been called out to the fires around the town.

They have managed to put them all out without serious damage but suspect it is the same person starting all of them.

Three fires were set off in and around Sanquhar within the space of four hours on Wednesday and then a fourth was discovered alongside the A76 Dumfries - Kilmarnock Road at Guildhall Bridge, Kirkconnel.

The latest was on Friday night at Mary’s Street at Sanquhar where firefighters managed to put out the flames using beaters.A Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue spokesman said:

“The fires were all put out by the firefighters using beaters and hoses.“The causes of the fires have been put down as suspected to be deliberate by an unknown person or persons.”

– Dumfries and Galloway Fire and Rescue spokesman

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Arson mum jailed: Full report

A woman has been jailed for six years at Carlisle Crown Court after admitting setting fire to her house - while her two year old daughter was asleep inside.

Thirty five year old Deborah Ann Donald was also charged with perverting the course of justice after she blamed the arson - at her home in Wastwater Avenue in Workington - on two other women. Andy Burn reports.

Mother jailed for child cruelty and arson

A woman who set fire to her house with her two year old daughter was inside has been jailed for six years at Carlisle Crown Court.

35-year-old Deborah Donald, from Wastwater Avenue in Workington, was also accused of perverting the course of justice by blaming the arson on two other women. In court, she pleaded guilty to three charges including arson, perverting the course of justice, and child cruelty.

Deborah Donald Credit: ITV Border

Arson mother jailed for six years

A woman who set fire to her house while her two year old daughter was inside has been jailed for six years at Carlisle Crown Court.

35-year-old Deborah Donald, from Wastwater Avenue in Workington, was also accused of perverting the course of justice by blaming the arson on two other women.

In court, she pleaded guilty to three charges including arson, perverting the course of justice, and child cruelty.

Judge Paul Batty QC said it was a "deliberate" and "wicked" act, and sentanced her to six years with the recommendation that she serve at least half of that.