A fire which took firefighters more than six hours to extinguish was started deliberately Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service have revealed.
"We have concluded that the fire was started deliberately following the discovery of forced entry to the rear of the property and multiple seats of fire in different locations."
Station Manager, Ian Broadhead
Five emergency calls were made to report the blaze at the Wagon and Horses Pub on Nantwich Road in Audley, which started at around 9.30pm last night.
Crews from Newcastle, Sandyford, Hanley, Stone and the aerial ladder platform from Longton were sent to the scene to tackle the blaze, which was started on the first floor and spread to the roof.
The pub is closed on a Monday night so thankfully no one was inside at the time of the fire however that meant firefighters had to force entry in order to access the fire.
Over 30 firefighters tackled the blaze into the early hours of the morning, with the incident being scaled down to one fire engine at 3.40pm. The fire engine remained at the scene until 9.00am this morning monitoring hot spots before the joint fire and police investigation commenced.
Station Manager, Ian Broadhead said: "We have concluded that the fire was started deliberately following the discovery of forced entry to the rear of the property and multiple seats of fire in different locations.
"The incident has now been handed over to the police to continue with their investigations and fire service personnel will be leaving the scene shortly."
Anyone with any information about the fire can contact Staffordshire Police on 0300 123 4455 quoting incident number 963 of 27th June or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.