Arson cannot be ruled out as cause of Hunts cannabis factory blaze

AN investigation into a blaze at a cannabis factory in Huntingdon has proved inconclusive but fire officers say arson cannot be ruled out. Ruth Webb fled her home in Bernard Close along with her 11-year-old daughter Ashleigh and 19-year-old son Keith aft

AN investigation into a blaze at a cannabis factory in Huntingdon has proved inconclusive but fire officers say arson cannot be ruled out.

Ruth Webb fled her home in Bernard Close along with her 11-year-old daughter Ashleigh and 19-year-old son Keith after her neighbour's house caught on fire.

The blaze broke out at 5.40am on Tuesday (May 12) at the rear of an occupied property and spread to the Webb family home, leaving it smoke damaged and uninhabitable.

When emergency services arrived they discovered up to 200 plants in the unoccupied house next door. Two of the rooms were being used to grow the plants.


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The plants were seized by police and an investigation has been launched.

A fire investigation has been carried out and the cause of the blaze is still a mystery.

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A spokesman for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue said: "The fire investigation has been inconclusive, though an electrical fault has been ruled out. Usually there is an occupant that we can talk to, to help us rule out things but in this case we have not been able to talk to the resident. We therefore cannot rule out arson but we also cannot rule out that it was an accident."

Mrs Webb, 46, told The Hunts Post she had no idea she was living next door to a cannabis factory.

She said: "We never see anyone inside that house but last night there was a light on. It is shocking to think we were living next door to someone who was growing cannabis."

The family have had to go into temporary accommodation until they can move back into their home.

Mrs Webb added: "You see the affects of fire on television but until it happens to you it is hard to visualise the devastating impact it has. Nothing inside our home is salvageable.

"All we have is the clothes we are wearing so I'm grateful to St Peter's School for providing a new uniform and school shoes for Ashleigh."

The cause of the fire is not yet known.

INFORMATION: Anyone with information about the fire or the cannabis factory should contact Detective Sergeant Leigh Allman at Huntingdon Police Station on 0845 4564564 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.

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