Three Teenagers Arrested in Connection with Ampthill Arson Case

A large fire broke out at a derelict building in Ampthill, prompting a massive response from emergency services and the evacuation of nearby homes. Three teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of arson offences, and an investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.

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Three Teenagers Arrested in Connection with Ampthill Arson Case

Three Teenagers Arrested in Connection with Ampthill Arson Case

On Sunday afternoon, a large fire broke out at the derelict Leonard Cheshire Home on Woburn Street in Ampthill, prompting a massive response from emergency services. The blaze, which is suspected to be an act of arson, led to the evacuation of nearby homes, with residents being taken to Ampthill Rugby Club for safety.

Why this matters: The incident highlights the importance of addressing vacant and derelict properties, which can pose a significant risk to public safety. It also underscores the need for community vigilance and cooperation with authorities to prevent and investigate such incidents.

The fire started at around 3:50 pm at the former Agate House building on Woburn Road. Twelve crews from nearby towns, including Ampthill, Kempston, Bedford, Toddington, Luton, Biggleswade, Shefford, and Leighton Buzzard, were called to the scene. Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus used hose reels, jets, and an aerial platform to contain the fire.

As a precautionary measure, a 200m cordon was put in place, and people living nearby were asked to stay indoors and keep windows closed to prevent smoke inhalation. Nearby parks were also evacuated to ensure public safety. The blaze was brought under control by Sunday evening, but firefighters remained on the scene the following day to fully extinguish any remaining hotspots.

In connection with the incident, three teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of arson offences. They have been released on bail pending further enquiries as the investigation into the cause of the fire continues. Bedfordshire Police are appealing to the public for any information that could assist in the ongoing investigation.

Cllr Susan Clinch praised the emergency services and the community for their response to the incident, saying, "A big thank you from all of Ampthill to all our Emergency Services - Fire, Ambulance and Police all working together on response to the fire at the Agate House site on Woburn Road." She also thanked Ampthill Rugby Club for providing a welcome refuge for displaced residents.

The police are urging anyone with information about the fire to come forward and assist with the investigation. Those with relevant information can call 101 and quote reference 279 of 12 May. As the inquiry continues, the community of Ampthill remains vigilant and hopes for a swift resolution to this troubling incident.

Key Takeaways

  • Large fire breaks out at derelict Leonard Cheshire Home in Ampthill, suspected arson.
  • 12 fire crews respond, nearby homes evacuated, residents taken to Ampthill Rugby Club.
  • Three teenagers arrested on suspicion of arson, released on bail pending further enquiries.
  • Emergency services praised for swift response, community urged to remain vigilant.
  • Police appeal for information, ask witnesses to call 101 and quote reference 279 of 12 May.