THE cause of a major public house fire attended by firefighters from Wiveliscombe and Wellington this week has been deemed ‘accidental’.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue (DSFR) investigators looked at how the Kings Arms, in Staplegrove Road, Taunton, came to catch fire in the early hours of Wednesday (May 24).

The blaze largely destroyed the refurbished community pub and its manager had to be helped to safety by fire crews and taken to hospital for checks.

The former coaching inn, which dates to 1780 and is owned by the Stonegate Group, suffered 50 per cent damage on its ground floor from fire, smoke, and water.

Twenty per cent of the roof space was severely damaged by fire and smoke, and 10 per cent of the first floor was also severely damaged by fire and cutting away.

The blaze was believed to have taken hold on the first floor, which has substantial live-in staff accommodation, and then spread to the ground floor and also the roof space.

DSFR mobilised pumps from Wellington, Wiveliscombe, Taunton, Bridgwater, and Martock to tackle the incident.