INVESTIGATIONS are continuing into how a fire started which destroyed an historic thatched house in Taunton where firefighters from Wellington and across West Somerset were involved.

Both Wellington pumps were sent to the scene in the early hours of Monday (May 22) as well as fire crews from Wiveliscombe, Williton, and Nether Stowey to support the firefighting operation.

In total, Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue (DSFR) mobilised crews from 16 stations across both counties to help with the major incident in Kingston Road.

One person was in the property when it caught alight but Avon and Somerset Police said they had escaped unharmed before firefighters arrived.

A DSFR spokesperson said: “The house has been totally destroyed by fire and the cause of this fire is still being investigated.”

The spokesperson said personnel were on location for more than 24 hours while they put out the raging fire, then dampened down, and monitored for hotspots and kept watch until they were satisfied there was no further danger.

The incident resulted in advice for neighbours to keep doors and windows shut due to the large volume of smoke issuing from the incident.

Somerset Council highways staff closed Kingston Road both ways from Kingston Close to Corkscrew Lane and it was not expected to fully reopen until Wednesday (May 24).

A number of the fire crews also attended a major thatch roof blaze in Porlock Weir earlier in the month where two thatched houses were destroyed and others in the terrace were damaged.