Image caption,

The mill was gutted by the blaze on Thursday, but the four exterior walls were left standing

Five people have been arrested over a suspected arson attack which gutted a mill used to film scenes for Peaky Blinders and Downton Abbey.

A huge blaze engulfed the historic Dalton Mills complex in Keighley, West Yorkshire, on Thursday.

No-one was inside the building, in Dalton Lane, at the time of the fire and no injuries were reported.

West Yorkshire Police said the five suspects were being questioned on suspicion of arson.

At the height of the blaze, which started at about midday, 120 firefighters were at the scene.

Two fire crews remained for damping down on Friday morning, with about 10 firefighters continuing to throw water on the site to prevent the fire from re-igniting.

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said a multi-agency inquiry was due to start later.

Police are appealing to anyone who may have seen anything suspicious in the area between 11:30 GMT and midday to contact them.

Image source, Optimum Fireworks

Image caption,

At its height, about 120 firefighters tackled the blaze at the Keighley mill

Image caption,

Fire crews continued damping down at the gutted mill on Friday morning

Officers are also looking for drivers who may have dashcam footage from the scene to come forward.

On Thursday, people living near the scene were told to keep windows and doors closed and to avoid travelling through the area due to plumes of smoke.

Resident David Bradbury said he was “sad to see” the building, which had been empty, go up in flames.

Another eyewitness, Gary Coates, said he saw “flames coming from the bottom floor of the mill” as the inferno took hold of the mill “within minutes”.

The mill had been used for a number of film and television productions in recent years.

Richard Knight, from Screen Yorkshire, described it as “a destination in its own right”.

The building, built in 1869, was once the largest textile mill in Yorkshire, employing more than 2,000 workers.

It was struck by a serious fire in 2011, when it was believed copper thieves set fire to the site as they tried to burn off insulation to steal metal.

The complex fell into disrepair before being partially restored and taken off English Heritage’s at-risk register in 2015.

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