Locals ‘devastated’ after fire destroys church’s thatched roof in Norfolk

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service said the blaze was ‘under control’.

02 February 2022

Residents have described a “devastating” fire at an 11th century church in Beachamwell, Norfolk, which left the thatched roof of the Grade I listed building destroyed.

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service said that six fire engines had attended the blaze, which was now “under control”.

“We will have a presence on scene for the rest of the day at least”, the spokesperson added.

Beachamwell church fire
Flames could be seen rising from the church’s thatched roof (Steven Green/PA)

John Sanderson, an 87-year-old man who lives in the village, told the PA news agency that residents were “devastated”.

“All the roof is gone. I think just the walls are left”, he added.

Beachamwell church fire
Emergency services at the scene of a fire (Joe Giddens/PA)

“I just came back from the supermarket and saw police cars tearing down the road. When I got back I was told the church was on fire,” Mr Sanderson said.

It is understood the church was closed for repairs at the time.

The fire service later said they were “scaling down” their response, and thanked residents for their patience.

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