A fire has severely damaged the Grade II listed building Wythenshawe Hall – the roof of the 16th century building has been destroyed whilst extensive damage has been caused to an upper floor. The fire is now being treated as suspicious.
Shortly after 3.30am on Tuesday 15 March police and Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Services (GMFRS) were alerted after a blaze broke out in the timber-framed museum and art gallery, at Wythenshawe Hall.
Police officers and the fire service have begun a preliminary investigation of the building and are now appealing for anyone who may have any information to come forward. More than 50 firefighters tackled the fire at the Tudor Hall.
The hall was built in 1540 and was home to the Tatton family for around 400 years. It was donated to local people in 1926 and prior to that it was run as a museum and art gallery. Manchester City Council currently owns the hall.
Warren Pickstone from GMFRS has remarked “The fire is in the roof and is difficult to access but we have specialist resources at the scene. So far, we believe we have lost the roof and the first floor”.
Inspector Luke Breakspear of GMP’s South Manchester division has stated “The investigation into how this fire began is in its infancy, however we are now treating it as suspicious. This is a devastating fire in a beautiful building and we are determined to get to the bottom of how this could have happened”.
Mr. Breakspear also added “We are appealing for anyone who may have information or may have seen anyone in the area in the early hours of the morning to come forward. Luckily, no one was injured but the damage to the building and its contents will have a lasting effect on the community, and those who dedicated their lives to Wythenshawe Hall”.
TNT News Billy Rooney