Man Charged Over Winchester Fires

A man has been charged after a series of fires broke out in Winchester city centre on New Years day.

Firefighters were first called to Phase Eight, on the corner of Parchment Street at 7pm after a commercial bin was allegedly set alight and pushed through the window of the store, causing serious damage inside.
Shortly afterwards crews from the city were called to the Deanery at Winchester Cathedral, where it is believed a box of books and cardboard were deliberately set on fire. 120 people were evacuated from the nearby ice rink as firefighters tried to put out the blaze.
The Dean of the Cathedral was not in at the time and the three people living in the upstairs flat weren't hurt.
A third fire was then discovered at the Bengal Spice Restaurant, but thanks to the quick actions of the chef, the flames were put out before any damage was made.
47-year-old Sean Clements who lives in Jury Street in Winchester has been charged with a number of offences including three counts of arson with intent to endanger life, one count of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and three public order offences.

He will appear at Basingstoke Magistrates Court on Thursday 3 January, 2013.

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