Teenager arrested after huge fire at Frogmore paper mill in Hemel Hempstead

A teenager suspected of arson has been arrested after a huge fire broke out at Frogmore Paper Mill in Apsley on Saturday afternoon.

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue were called at 3.28pm on Saturday January 22 to a fire at business premises in Frogmere Road, Hemel Hempstead.

The fire department dispatched 13 devices to the incident.

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Smoke from the fire filled the sky in Apsley (C) Steven Dunn

A spokesperson for Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue said: “A well lit industrial unit approximately 50m x 10m. Firefighters used breathing apparatus, jets and hose reels to fight the blaze.

“The fire was brought under control around 6.30pm but crews remained on site to mitigate damage etc.

“We are now working jointly with the police to determine the cause of the fire, which is currently listed as deliberate.”

Police were called at around 3.35pm to help at the scene of a fire in the Fourdrinier Way area of ​​Apsley.

Sam Gray, who lives in the new build at Apsley Quay, sent this photo (C) Sam Gray Photograpy (SGP-LONDON PHOTOGRAPHY UK)

A Hertfordshire Police spokesperson said: “A fire was reported to have started in a dumpster, before spreading to a nearby building.

“Officers moved in to put in place road closures while firefighters worked to put out the blaze. The road was reopened around 5:50 p.m.

“The fire was believed to have been set deliberately and investigations are continuing.

“A 13-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of arson and has been released under investigation while investigations continue.”

Photo taken from Lawn Lane (C) Steven Dunn

Steven Dunn captured some smoke footage from his house on Lawn Lane.

He said: “I was working from home and was walking towards the kitchen when I saw smoke coming out the window, at first I thought it was someone burning leaves or something .

“But then I saw a huge mass of smoke and there was an orange hue and you could see flames at the bottom. The smoke was covering all of Apsley.

“I was shocked by the amount of smoke in there, and it was very thick.

Sam Gray, who lives in the new build at Apsley Quay, sent this photo (C) Sam Gray Photograpy (SGP-LONDON PHOTOGRAPHY UK)

“A number of emergency teams including fire, police, paramedics and a first response unit were dispatched to tackle the blaze which lasted for over an hour.

“At one point you couldn’t see the fire truck lights because the smoke was too thick.

“It was quite disturbing and happy that the wind was blowing the other way, otherwise it could have affected a lot of houses.

“Even after everything was turned off, when I opened my window, there was a strange, almost metallic smell.

“Luckily no one was injured, but I think there was damage to the Frogmore Paper Mill, which is such a historic building, I hope it’s not too serious.”

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Photo taken after the fire was extinguished by the emergency services (C) Steven Dunn

Councilor Adrian England, County Councilor for the Town of Hemel Division, has pledged £1,000 from the ‘members local budget’ to raise funds for recovery and rebuilding.

County Councilors each have an annual ‘Local Membership Budget’ of £10,000 to £15,000, which is made available to be allocated to organizations with varying needs, for projects that will support people and places of their divisions.

Councilor Jan Maddern (Nash Mills Division) also pledged £1,000 from the members’ locality budget to the fundraiser, she said: ‘This is a vital asset to the local community and is part of the extremely important history of Apsley / Nash Mills papermaking We must ensure it is safeguarded.

“Of course, a lot of the reinstatement will be covered by insurance, but not all of it, so Adrian’s donations and mine will go to the extra stuff that can’t be recovered.”

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