An investigation is under way after a fire, which is believed to have started deliberately, in the public toilets at Clitheroe Castle.
Fire crews from Clitheroe and Great Harwood wearing breathing apparatus tackled the blaze after smoke was seen billowing from the roof of the toilet block in the grounds of the historic building on Saturday, just after 1pm.
Two firefighters used one hose reel and a ventilation unit to tackle the fire and clear the building of smoke. There was severe fire damage to two toilet roll holders and severe smoke damage to the room. Firefighters were at the scene approximately one hour.
Sgt Stuart Banks, of Clitheroe Police, said the fire was being treated as arson. He added: “Investigations are continuing and we are appealing for information. However, after an initial examination by Lancashire Fire and Rescue and Lancashire Police, we can say the fire was started deliberately.
Meanwhile, in a separate incident, vandals smashed a telephone box in Billington. The offenders struck the BT phone booth, which is situated at the corner of Billington Gardens, some time over the weekend.
Upset by the attack, local councillor Ged Mirfin said: “It’s awful. After we fought so hard to retain the phone boxes, mindless vandals do this. They should be forced to pay for their actions. This feels like a major kick in the teeth by a set of mindless morons who should know better.
Low level incidences of vandalism of which this is an example are a direct consequence of the withdrawal of policing in the Ribble Valley, specifically in rural areas in particular. This is one of the two most well used call boxes which is used particularly by housing tenants on benefits who can’t afford mobile phones or landlines. It’s criminal what’s happened literally. Billington deserves better!"
Anyone with information, should contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers line on 0800 555111.