Teenagers arrested following Parkgate fire

Police investigating a large fire on marshland in Neston have made three arrests.

Three teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of arson following the fire on Saturday 19 March.

Three boys, two aged 13, and one aged 14 are currently in custody being interviewed by officers.

Inspector Paul Fegan, of Ellesmere Port local policing unit, said, “As part of our investigation I am keen to speak to anyone who may have been in the area.

“I also want to hear from anyone who has CCTV or dashcam footage that could assist us in piecing together how the fire started.”

At the height of the fire, a spokesperson for Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS) said, “Firefighters are tackling a blaze involving around 500 square metres of marshland [later much larger]. Four fire engines from Cheshire and two from Merseyside are at the scene.“Crews are using beaters and hose reel jets to fight the fire.

“There are two areas of fire spreading around the marshland.

“Fire breaks have been put in place to protect nearby properties. Two main jets and hose reels are in use.

“Police have been advised as it is suspected that the fire has been started deliberately. A fire investigator will also attend.

“One fire engine from Powey Lane, one from Ellesmere Port, two from Chester and two from Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service are in attendance.”

One early eyewitness, Peter Guy, said as events unfolded, “Looks like the marshes are on fire – it’s absolutely huge and is getting bigger.

“Caught fire so quickly and is spreading right up Parkgate parade.”

As the fire developed, he continued, “Vast fire at Parkgate now about 500m and growing. Lots of wildlife being destroyed. Quite unbelievable how quickly it has spread. Emergency services just arriving.”

As dusk turned to nighttime, the sky could be seen “burning orange.”

At about 8pm on Saturday, BBC News reporter, John Ironmonger, said that the fire had “reached the back gardens of some houses.”

If you have information, CCTV or dash cam footage please contact Cheshire Constabulary online https://www.cheshire.police.uk/tell-us  or contact 101 quoting IML 1226437.

Information can also be provided anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Main image with thanks to AndyParry on Twitter

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