Appeal to find arsonist

The scene of a house fire in Gorse Walk, Leigh
The scene of a house fire in Gorse Walk, Leigh

POLICE have launched a hunt for a man who deliberately set fire to a house in Leigh.

The arsonist is reported to have a man approached a house on Gorse Walk, Leigh and broke in through the front door at around 1.30am on Wednesday June 10.

Once inside he went upstairs to the back bedroom, where he used accelerant to start a small fire.

On his way back out of the address the offender started another small fire downstairs, again using accelerant.

The Fire and Rescue Service extinguished the fire and confirmed that it had been started by deliberate ignition.

The offender is described as a white man, early 40s, around 5’9” tall, stocky build, with shaved dark hair and stubble.

No-one was in at the time, but it is believed a young woman lives in the terraced property.

Detective Constable Lynsey Watson said: “I would first of all like to reassure the community that we believe this to be a targeted attack, not someone setting fires at random.

“To reassure the public as best we can, we have tasked extra officers to patrol the area, but we do not believe this man poses a significant risk to the general public.

“However, that takes nothing away from the severity of this crime and the reckless disregard for the safety of others that this offender has demonstrated with this arson attack.

“I would like to appeal to the public for anyone who may have seen someone matching this description in the area at the time to call police.”

Anyone with information should call 01618567225 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.