Man charged with burglary and arson after huge fire at Ash Green Primary School in Halifax

A 19-year-old man has been charged with burglary and arson following a huge fire at a West Yorkshire primary school.

Aaron Foster, of Mixenden in Halifax, has been remanded in custody to appear before Bradford magistrates on Thursday.

It follows a blaze at Ash Green Primary School in Halifax on Tuesday night, which destroyed four classrooms.

The school was closed on Wednesday.

Speaking to ITV News, headteacher Mungo Sheppard said: "This is the worst possible thing. Horrible night, last night. But the support from the emergency services has been amazing."

He added: "We will have all our wonderful children back in as soon as we can."

Emergency services were called to the school at around 7.45pm on Tuesday.

Police arrived to find one of the buildings at the Clough Lane site on fire.

West Yorkshire Police said a male was arrested at the scene and taken to hospital for further treatment.

West Yorkshire Fire Service said a two-storey building had been "100% involved" in the blaze. Residents were advised to keep windows and doors closed.

Ten appliances were sent to deal with the fire and crews remained on site overnight to damp down.

Ash Green Primary School fire Credit: ITV Calendar News

The school's Twitter account tweeted: "..It has been an emotional evening, but we will continue to work together as a team, to provide the best we can for our children!"

Meanwhile the community has also reacted with shock to the fire.

The social media account for the local Holy Nativity Church posted that "looking on as our school burns comes with a feeling of helplessness as the professionals do their job."

The church opened its doors today, offering free tea and bacon sandwiches for the local community.

Reverend Robb Sutherland, who runs Holy Trinity School, said: "It's a proper community school. There are a lot of kids who are waking up this morning top find that the work they did yesterday hasn't made it through the night."

Others have expressed their shock on social media.

Community fundraiser

Thousands of pounds have already been raised through a crowdfunding campaign set up in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

Organiser Anthony Martin wrote: "Please help the community of Mixenden, Halifax, West Yorkshire.

"A fire has devastated the main school. Many people will be devastated by this loss.

"Families present and past have grown up attending that school. Raising money even to get help with counseling or any other means would be so welcome if you can."