Man jailed for Wythenshawe Hall arson

18/08/2017

A 27 year old man has today sentenced to four and a half years imprisonment at Manchester Crown Court of setting fire to Wythenshawe Hall, a Grade 1 listed Tudor mansion in Manchester on 15th March 2016.

Jeremy Taylor pushed burning newspaper through the front door where a majority of the damage was caused, as he walked through the park in the early hours of the morning. This fire then spread through the entrance hall and upwards onto the first and second floors and out through the roof, destroying the bell tower.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service were automatically alerted by the fire alarms shortly after 3am. They worked through the night and into the following two days to extinguish the fire.

Gary Logan for CPS said: "Jeremy Taylor, for reasons only known to himself, caused extensive damage to one of the oldest and most loved buildings in Manchester that will cost in the region of £4.75 million to repair.

"His actions almost destroyed the 16th Century building and put at risk the lives of fire-fighters who attended to extinguish the blaze.

"Throughout the case he denied starting the fire, but we worked closely with the police to build a strong case against him, including CCTV and telephone evidence which proved he was in the area at the time of the fire. His DNA was found on a match next to the scraps of singed newspaper which were found at the scene.  However on the first day of the trial, he eventually admitted to the offence and pleaded guilty to arson."

Note to editors:

Gary Logan is a Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West