ARSON LIKELY THE CAUSE OF A FIRE THAT SIGNIFICANTLY DAMAGED A HISTORIC CHURCH

In 1860, the old Wesleyville United Church was erected. A church visited by many for various religious events along with Sunday school. The church and its surrounding buildings are all historic.

At approximately 5:40 this morning Port Hope Fire Department along with Northumberland OPP responded to the church located on Lakeshore Rd 10 Kilometres west of the town of Port Hope for a report of a structure fire.

Significant damage was sustained to the entrance of the building after a fire was started just inside the entrance.

Northumberland OPP and the Office of the Fire Marshal are currently investigating this fire.

The property caretaker who lives on site told us that the Fire was intentionally set after the front door was forcefully opened. She also told us that within the building a source of ignition had been found that has since been removed and entered into evidence.

The fire was discovered by the caretakers husband who was leaving for work when he noticed the flames and smoke.

We will be following this incident closely providing updates as they become available.

Anyone with information that could assist with this investigation is encouraged to contact the Northumberland OPP at 1 888-310-1122. Should you wish to remain anonymous, you may call the Peterborough/Northumberland Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) where you may be eligible for a cash reward of up to $2,000 and not have to appear in court. You can also submit information online at http://www.stopcrimehere.ca.

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