30/04/2015

Grade 1 Listed Home Destroyed In Fire

An 18th century Grade 1 listed stately home near Guildford has been "gutted" after a fire broke out in the basement on Wednesday afternoon.

Emergency services were called to National Trust-owned Clandon Park House at about 16:00 on Wednesday, when thick black smoke was seen coming from the building.

At its height around 80 firefighters were at the scene. It is understood that firecrews worked throughout the night to bring the blaze under control.

The building, built in the 1720s, is said to have housed a collection of 18th Century furniture, porcelain and textiles.

A great number of these are thought to have been destroyed.

In s statement, Director General of the National Trust, Helen Ghosh, said: "The most important thing for me is that no-one has been hurt in this awful fire and that everyone is safe.

"But it has been heart-breaking to witness the terrible damage to this wonderful mansion, which means so much, to so many people.

"This will come as a terrible shock and a devastating personal blow to all our devoted staff and volunteers.

The public has been asked to stay away from the site, where an investigation into the cause of the fire is due to begin.

(MH/CD)

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