A hotel and country club in West Sussex has been severely damaged by a major fire overnight.
A spokesperson from West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service said that 50% of Cottesmore Hotel Golf & Country Club in Pease Pottage had been damaged in the blaze.
All guests and staff were safely evacuated from the hotel.
The fire brigade were called to the scene just after 5pm yesterday and 10 engines battled to put out the blaze, which was eventually brought under control around 6am this morning. Fire officers are still at the hotel, dampening down while investigations get under way to discover the cause of the blaze.
In a statement posted to social media Cottesmore said: “Due to a devastating fire in the club house Cottesmore will be closed today. All the guests and staff are safe. Thank you for everyone’s support through this difficult time.”
A popular wedding venue, Cottesmore features 27 holes of golf, seven self-catering golf lodges, swimming pool, beauty salon and tennis courts.
The golf club was opened by Michael Rogerson, a retired school teacher and his farmer son Matthew, after transforming former farm buildings in 1973.
The hotel development began in 1983, with later additions made in 1992, 2002 and 2007.
Matthew’s son-in-law and daughter, Johnny and Louisa Porter took over the running of the business in 2013.