Boy, 12, arrested over suspected arson in Limavady

A 12-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of arson and subsequently bailed following a major fire at a derelict building in Limavady.

The blaze broke out at a derelict former nightclub building in Catherine Street just after 17:40 BST on Thursday.

More than 50 firefighters tackled the blaze and it was brought under control in the early hours of Friday.

The boy was arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life and has since been bailed pending further enquiries, the police have said.

Catherine Street remained closed for much of Friday but reopened shortly before 20:00.

The police have said the investigation into the fire remains ongoing but that they are treating it as "deliberate ignition".

David Doherty, western area commander for the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS), said Catherine Street was quickly evacuated on Thursday but it would stay closed on Friday due to the discovery of asbestos.

Mr Doherty said a number of fire crews from across the north west attended the “complicated incident”.

“There was several gas cylinders involved in the fire and there was also suspected asbestos in the roof tiles," Mr Doherty told BBC Radio Foyle's North West Today programme on Friday.

Mr Doherty said that at the height of the blaze, eight fire appliances responded, one aerial appliance, one command support unit and one hazardous material vehicle.

He said that crews from Coleraine, Limavady, Londonderry, Dungiven, Strabane, Magherafelt, Maghera and Castlederg all attended the incident.

Causeway Coast and Glens council have been informed of the asbestos, Mr Doherty said, and are arranging for specialist contractors to attend the scene.

In a statement, the council said they are liaising with relevant agencies and said that further information will be released in due course.

"Members of the public should adhere to police cordons and advice from emergency services personnel at this time,” a council spokesperson added.