Peckforton Castle: Bridegroom arrested over hotel fire

A bridegroom has been arrested in connection with a fire at a historic country house hotel in Cheshire.

The blaze started at Peckforton Castle, near Tarporley, just before 0500 BST on Sunday.

Seventy guests were evacuated from the 48-bedroom hotel, a popular wedding venue, after the fire began in the drawing room. No-one was injured.

Cheshire Police said a 36-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life.

The man, from Merseyside, remains in police custody for questioning.

'Tough operation'

About 100 firefighters tackled the blaze at the hotel for most of Sunday and crews were still damping down on Monday.

Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service said all three floors of one of the wings were extensively damaged.

Firefighters at the building on Stone House Lane monitored the scene using thermal imaging cameras overnight.

Keith Brooks from the fire service said it had been a very tough operation.

"It was a very hot day and the construction of the hotel, with very thick stone walls, means it retains the heat, which made access quite difficult for firefighters."

The 19th Century building is Grade I listed and has been used as the setting for episodes of Dr Who and the 2010 film Robin Hood.

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