Arsonists cause £250,000 worth of damage to Melrose farm

The fire-hit barn.
The fire-hit barn.

Witnesses are being sought in a bid to identify three people seen running away from the scene of a deliberate fire which caused more than £250,000 worth of damage to a farm near Melrose

A barn, containing hay and straw bales, trailers and tractor attachments was completely destroyed in the early hours of Saturday, December 29.

Scene of the fire.

Scene of the fire.

Malcolm Kelly, who farms the land just outside Darnick, says the fire, started around 4am, could easily have spread to his neighbouring farm house.

He said: “Apart from the quarter of a million pound plus of damage and the time and inconvenience it’s going to cause, if the wind had been blowing in the other direction my family and I would now be homeless also.

“In the shed were all the hay and straw for the winter along with various trailers, gates, posts, tractor attachments and other farm related things.”

Police are calling the blaze suspicious and believe that three people were seen running through the grounds of nearby Borders General Hospital just minutes after the barn was set ablaze.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “We are investigating following a suspicious fire at a farm in Melrose.

“The incident happened around 4.15am on Saturday, December 29 at a property situated near to the Borders General Hospital.

“Several hundred hay bales and farm machinery were all destroyed as a result of the fire and inquiries are continuing to identify those responsible.

“Anyone with information is asked to come forward.”

Fire crews from Galashiels, Selkirk and Lauder tackled the blaze and continued damping down until around 11.30am that morning.

Anyone with information or saw anything suspicious can call Police Scotland on 101.