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Friday, 19 December 2014

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Family counting the cost as arsonists target Silecroft pub

A SILECROFT pub has been targeted by arsonists.

Fire engines from Millom and Bootle were called to a blaze at the rear of the Miner’s Arms pub, in Main Street, in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Watch manager Paul Milburn, who was at the scene, said crews managed to extinguish the fire in a relatively short space of time.

But the Sim family, who took the pub over in February, have been left counting the cost.

Graham Sim said: “My family have built it up in to a very busy business and then we were called up at 5am to say the place was on fire.

“My wife and children have put a lot of work in to it so they were quite upset.

“And while there isn’t a lot of fire damage, there is a lot of smoke damage.

“We spent a lot of money bringing it up to the standard that it was.

“As you can imagine, the family are more than disappointed.”

Mr Milburn said an investigation was ongoing into the cause of the blaze and a Cumbria police spokeswoman confirmed they were treating the incident as arson.

Mr Sim expressed his shock at the incident happening in such a tight-knit community and said the pub was likely to be closed for several weeks.

But he added: “We will rise again, regardless.

“The pub will be back up and running again to the same high standards, hopefully within a short space of time.”

Councillor Edith Lister, chairwoman of Whicham Parish Council, which represents Silecroft, said it was a blow to the community.

She said: “You don’t expect anything like this to happen in a small village. It is tragic really, especially as they were just getting going.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact PC Andy Robinson on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

l The fire brigade was also called out to a town centre blaze in Millom yesterday.

Wellington Street was closed off by Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service for several hours while they tackled the fire.

Crews from Millom, Broughton and Bootle were called to an attic fire in a house just after 1pm.

Shopkeepers reported seeing thick black smoke pluming from the house. Firefighters confirmed a small amount of damage was caused to the loft space.

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