Lightning strike blamed for blaze that wrecks farm shed at North Tuddenham, near Dereham

A lightning strike is thought to have caused a fierce fire that destroyed a bird-rearing shed on a mid-Norfolk farm.

Dereham firefighters were called to the Dann family's farming complex between the old A47 road and Pound Lane at North Tuddenham at about 2.30pm yesterday.

The wooden building, which was empty at the time but at certain periods of the year contains up to 250 pheasant poults, was razed. However, the fire crews stopped the blaze spreading to a cluster of neighbouring farm buildings.

Keeper Paul Canham said he was at home when the thunderstorm blew up.

'I was indoors and heard a crash and didn't think anything of it, but when I looked out there was this cloud of smoke and flames going 15 or 20 feet in the air,' he added.

Mr Canham said he and two neighbours tried their best to fight the flames with garden hoses until the fire crews arrived, 'but we were just wasting our time'.

Nobody was hurt.

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