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  1. ITV Report

Stately home gutted by suspicious fire

An aerial photograph shows the extent of the blaze Credit: Simon Willmott

Police cordons surround the gates of Parnham House in Dorset following a huge fire which has destroyed part of the property.

The fire that gutted the Grade I listed stately home is being treated as 'suspicious' and police have issued an appeal calling for witnesses to come forward.

Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue

Police were called by at around 4am on Saturday 15 April, to reports of a large fire at historic Parnham House in Beaminster.

Credit: @DWFRSCraigBaker

Officers attended to assist the fire service while they tackled the extensive blaze.

The house suffered a significant amount of damage.

Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue

At this stage it is not believed anyone was inside the property at the time of the fire.

Police say a full search will be carried out once it is safe to do so. Officers say the property is likely to be cordoned off for some time to allow investigators to examine the scene.

Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue

An investigation is currently underway to establish the cause and the circumstances around the blaze.

We are treating the fire as suspicious and I would appeal to anyone who may have witnessed any suspicious activity in the area around the early hours of this morning to please contact police.

– DETECTIVE INSPECTOR ANDREA POWER, WEYMOUTH CID

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting incident number 15:69.

How the manor house used to look Credit: ITV News