Great Trethew Country Manor Hotel fire was accidental, investigation reveals
THE BLAZE which destroyed a three-storey country manor hotel near Liskeard was started accidentally, an investigation by Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service has confirmed.
At its height, more than 50 firefighters from across Cornwall, supported by crews from Devon and Somerset, tackled the raging fire at Great Trethew Manor Country House, Horningtops, on Tuesday, August 20.
For more than five hours dozens of firefighters were committed to tackling the inferno as it tore through the property.
Crews remained on site throughout the night dampening down hotspots and had to return again on Thursday after smoke was seen coming from the remains of the property.
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Following their assessments, which took place on Wednesday, investigators reported the cause of the fire as accidental but Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service said no other information about how it started is available at this time.
The popular hotel was fully booked when the fire broke out shortly before 12.30pm on Tuesday. Most of the guests were out of the building and there were no reported casualties.
Speaking from the scene, fire incident commander Martin Wingrove said the blaze had completely destroyed the building.
"It's just four walls," he said. "The roof, first and second floor have collapsed to the ground floor and are just smouldering."
Plumes of smoke were said to be seen billowing up to 110ft high from the building, with crews tackling the fire using high pressure hoses through open doors and windows.
Neighbours and local hotels took in guests from the manor.
The owners, who are said to be devastated, took to the social networking site Facebook to thank family, friends, colleagues and guests for the support they had received.
"Thank you for all your kind messages," they wrote.
"Trethew Manor has gone and everything has been lost. But everybody is well and no one was hurt."
They have asked anyone with photographs or items from Great Trethew to keep them safe and pass them on.
They wrote: "The building has been fire-struck right through, leaving us with just what we are stood in and four concrete walls. In the time ahead, we will be asking anyone who has any snippets, photos or anything to do with the manor, if they would be so kind to keep them safe for the moment."