Suspected arson attacks leave trail of destruction along Brighton street

8:50am Saturday 31st August 2013

Motorcycles, cars and front gardens were set alight leaving a trail of destruction in the early hours of Friday morning in suspected arson attacks.

Preston Circus Fire Station received a number of calls at 4am yesterday morning to Hartington Road, Brighton, where a motorcycle was on fire.

In the short time it took crews to arrive the fire had spread to a Ford Mondeo parked nearby.

As fire fighters extinguished the blaze, the suspected arsonists worked their way through Hanover setting fire to recycling bins in Hartington Terrace.

Crew manager Deakin from Preston Circus Fire Station said: “As soon as we started putting out one fire, we could see smoke coming from behind houses elsewhere.”

The attack moved on to Shanklin Road where a front garden went up in flames as garden waste was torched.

In the same road, a Peugeot was set alight as well as more recycling bins.

The suspected arsonists then moved onto Moulsecoomb where a further three recycling bins needed extinguishing.

Fire crews responded to 11 calls of fire in less than two hours.

Will Richards, 21, of Hartington Road, said he heard loud popping noises which woke him up at around 4am yesterday.

He said: “I poked my head out my window and saw a bike, it looked like a vesper, with the seat on fire.

“I phoned the fire brigade but then noticed an engine had already turned up.

“There was a lot of smoke coming from a car which was also on fire - it was higher than all the houses.”

A spokesman for Sussex Police confirmed that one car, two motorbikes and a bin were reported to be on fire at Hartington Road in Brighton at 4.05am on Friday morning.

Police were also informed that other fires were started in a bin in Hartington Terrace, a bin, an abandoned sofa and a car in Bembridge Street, a motorbike in Bonchurch Road and a bin alight on Widdicombe Way.

Police are linking all the attacks which are being investigated as arson.

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