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Fire-damaged building is targeted in arson attack

The walkway between Main Street and Laharna Retail Park remains closed following the recent fire in the bingo hall. INLt 21-677-CON

The walkway between Main Street and Laharna Retail Park remains closed following the recent fire in the bingo hall. INLt 21-677-CON

Repairs to a fire-damaged premises in Larne town centre have suffered a setback following an attack by arsonists.

Earlier this month, over 50 firefighters tackled a blaze that broke out at a bingo hall in Laharna Retail Park.

The cause is thought to have been accidental.

While repairs on the building are being carried out, the walkway next to the site – which links Main Street to Laharna Retail Park– has been closed off, causing disruption to shoppers in the town.

The situation has been further complicated by a second fire at the rear of the bingo hall, which the NI Fire and Rescue Service said was started deliberately.

Two industrial bins were destroyed in the attack, which took place shortly after midnight on Monday, May 12.

Police have confirmed they are investigating the matter.

The managing agents for Laharna Retail Park, Osborne King said the arson attack has “significantly complicated” the process of reinstating the damaged premises.

A spokesman added: “Additional security measures are being implemented to prevent further malicious damage.

“When it is safe to do so and while preparing for the reinstatement work, the walkway may be opened again.

“Unfortunately this will probably be temporary before the substantial work is undertaken.

“The reinstatement could take a number of weeks.”

 
 
 

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