Feeds

Rookie plumber torches £5m mansion

First day on the job goes up in smoke

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

A fire which ravaged a £5m Georgian mansion was likely caused by an unfortunate meeting between a plumbing apprentice bearing a blow torch and polystyrene roof installation, The Daily Mail reports.

More than 60 firemen fought the blaze at Kittery Court, in Kingswear, Devon - owned by "Forever Friends" greeting cards millionaire Andrew Brownsword. The house was undergoing a £2m conversion into a luxury hotel when disaster struck on Monday.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service's John Howes explained: "It appears at this stage that this was an unfortunate plumber who was soldering in the roof space of a large building, which was undergoing total renovation. For reasons we don't yet know, the fire has flashed up quickly and gone through the whole of a brand new and very expensive roof.

"Our initial investigations indicate that it was not his fault the flames spread so quickly. We think a blowtorch may have set light to expanded polystyrene foam in the roof space."

Contractors at the site apparently tried to conceal the identity of the culprit, but a neighbour reported: "I heard it was started by a teenager on his first day. You have to feel sorry for the poor lad. He must feel terrible."

The unfortunate rookie is described as "very upset". Brownsword is likewise "heartbroken" and "devastated", a spokesman confirmed, but is also "sure there was no malice involved".

The Daily Mail has pics of the inferno here. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Delaware pair nabbed for getting saucy atop Mexican eatery
Burrito meets soft taco in alleged rooftop romp outrage
Japanese artist cuffed for disseminating 3D ladyparts files
Printable genitalia fall foul of 'obscene material' laws
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Brit Rockall adventurer poised to quit islet
Occupation records broken, champagne corks popped
Canuck reader threatens suicide over exact dimensions of SPAAAACE!
How many As? Reg hack's writing cops a shoeing
Accused! Yahoo! exec! SUES! her! accuser!, says! sex! harassment! never! happened!
Allegations were for 'financial gain', countersuit claims
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.