Third man arrested in Crooked House fire investigation

07 September 2023 by
Third man arrested in Crooked House fire investigation

A third man has been arrested as part of an investigation in to the fire that destroyed the historic Crooked House pub.

Staffordshire Police said a 51-year-old man, from Buckingham, had been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit arson with intent or being reckless as to whether life was endangered.

He has since been released on conditional police bail while enquiries continue.

The Himley pub, once known as Britain's "wonkiest" inn, was gutted by a fire on 5 August and demolished without council permission two days later.

The blaze happened just two weeks after the pub was sold by Marston's brewery to ATE Farms Limited.

The third arrest comes after a 66-year-old man and a 33-year-old man were arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life on 24 August. They both remain on conditional police bail while the investigation continues.

Staffordshire Police said officers had trawled through CCTV footage and spoken to people who had come forward with information since the fire.

"We understand that speculation is still widespread, both locally and online," Staffordshire Police said in a statement. "We'd like to reiterate that we are working hard to get through an extensive list of enquiries at this time."

The Crooked House pub was built in the 18th century and became a tourist attraction due to its sloping bar where customers could roll coins and marbles uphill.

Its destruction in the fire caused outrage in the local community and led to calls for the pub to be rebuilt.

Over 25,000 bricks salvaged from the site were last week locked away in secure containers after reports that vandals were selling bricks on Facebook Marketplace for up to £50 each.

Staffordshire Police said: "We are still asking those people who might have information which can help us to get in touch if they haven't already.

"Call us on 101, or message us using Live Chat on our website. If you prefer to report anonymously, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."

Image: Stephen Clarke / Shutterstock

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