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Pastor's sadness at Norfolk church blaze

PUBLISHED: 11:14 16 June 2009 | UPDATED: 15:03 14 July 2010

Carleton Rode Baptist Church damaged by fire. Photo: James Bass.

Carleton Rode Baptist Church damaged by fire. Photo: James Bass.

Adam Gretton

A pastor spoke of his sadness today after a suspected arson attack devastated a Norfolk church.

Scenes of crime and fire investigators were at the scene of the blaze at Carleton Rode Baptist Church, near Attleborough, this morning following the fire, which started just after 10pm last night.

A pastor spoke of his sadness today after a suspected arson attack devastated a Norfolk church.

Scenes of crime and fire investigators were at the scene of the blaze at Carleton Rode Baptist Church, near Attleborough, this morning following the fire, which started just after 10pm last night.

Firefighters from Wymondham, Attleborough, Long Stratton, East Harling, Hethersett and Norwich attended the incident at the 19th century building in Chapel Road, which is believed to have been started by burglars. About half of the Grade II listed church suffered severe damage.

Rev Mark Taylor, pastor of Carleton Rode Baptist Church, emailed the EDP at 1.45am this morning to speak of his devastation after watching the fire fighting operation.

“My sadness is that five weeks ago we began a youth club called 'The Loft' in the church and 40 of the village children attend this club. The place destroyed by fire is the very place that they meet every Friday.”

“Not only has this fire caused a sense of pain and loss to the church community it has also put a temporary halt to a valued service for the wider village,” he said.

A spokeswoman for Norfolk Fire and Rescue said: “The fire was believed to have been started after a burglary. Fire investigators are going back today, along with a crew from Wymondham to check for hot spots.”

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