Historic cottages to be demolished after arson attacks

Council workers have begun demolishing two historic buildings which had fallen victim to serial arsonists.

The farm cottage and superintendent’s house inside Hainault Forest Country Park, near Romford Road, Hainault, were set alight three times last week.

During the worst incident, on Monday, firefighters battled flames which destroyed the roof and much of the first floor of the derelict house.

It was deemed that “significant improvements” would have been needed to bring the buildings up to modern standards.

The homes were built as part of Foxburrows Farm shortly after 1851 when clearance of Hainault Forest began to make way for farmland.

The Recorder of July 27, 1906 gave a full account of how the remaining forest was opened to the public.