Two young donkeys have been tragically killed in a barn fire in Devon, which is believed to be caused by an arson attack

Two young donkeys were killed in a fire at a barn in Brauntonin North Devon in what is believed to be the latest in a spate of arson attacks.

A spokesperson for the Devon and Cornwall Arson Task Team , which is investigating the incident, said: “Between 5.30pm and 6.45pm on Sunday night, Devon Fire and Rescue were called to four separate barn-type fires, three in the Braunton area and one in the Sutcombe area of Holsworthy.

“There were no reports of personal injury, but there was substantial loss of property, feed and some livestock including two donkeys.

The cause of the fires is unknown and we are investigating them as if they are linked because they are in the same geographical area.

“There was a stable and a shed on the property at Braunton Great Field, Braunton, housing two young donkeys which were killed in the fire. Hay and farm equipment were set alight by unknown means.”

The two donkeys had arrived at the barn on the Friday before the fire. One was seven months old and the other a yearling.

Their owner Colin Farrow said: “Naturally, we are all very upset. It is a great tragedy – they were just babies really.

“We had only just bought the donkeys for our family, from a farm in North Devon. The worsething is the wickedness and cruelty of it. I am hoping that the people didn’t know donkeys were in the stable. But on a nearby farm, a barn with 90 calves in it was also set alight on the same night.”

William Barrett , the owner of the ground and property lost tractors, a horse box, hay and other machinery.

He said: “The ground and buildings belong to me. It is only a smallholding. I was in the process of selling the property, but had not completed. The donkeys belongedto the people buying the barn. As we were about to complete I let the donkeys on to the land.”

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