A WORKSHOP on the National Trust’s Holnicote Estate was almost completely destroyed by fire early today.
The alarm was sounded by a tenant farmer at isolated Horner Farm, near Luccombe, at about 9 am.
A fire and rescue crew was initially sent to the scene from Minehead, but on arrival the officer in charge realised the incident was much more serious and called in further crews from Dulverton, Wiveliscombe, Nether Stowey, and Lynton.
It is thought an electrical fault was to blame for setting alight the converted barn premises.
The fire quickly ripped through the 164 feet by 33 feet building, although nobody was hurt in the incident.
It took several hours for the firefighters to put out the blaze using compressed air foam, two hose reel jets and one main jet.
Approximately 70 per cent of the building was destroyed and machinery and tools inside the workshop were even more badly damaged.
National Trust senior rural surveyor Andrew Lawes said although a detailed fire investigation report was awaited, it appeared that faulty electrics were to blame.
Mr Lawes said: “Our insurers and loss adjusters will visit in the New Year to survey the extent of the damage to the barn.
“We are relieved nobody has been hurt and are grateful to the fire and rescue service for their efforts in containing the fire so quickly and preventing the spread of damage to other parts of Horner Farm.”