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'BUSINESS AS USUAL' DESPITE pounds 10K DAMAGE AFTER BLAZE.

Byline: Tina Junday

A SUSPECTED arson attack has destroyed timber worth up pounds 10,000 at a Coventry joiners.

Firefighters were called to Paul Shields Joinery, in Broad Street, Foleshill, on Thursday night - but despite the damage the company says it's business as usual.

Firefighters tackled the blaze at a portable hut which stored a stacks of expensive timber.

The joinery firm was targeted by vandals about six months ago when they smashed some of windows and broke into a building but left empty- handed.

Members of a nearby mosque called the fire service at about 10pm after they saw smoke. Owner Paul Shields, who has been running the firm for more than 10 years, says two of his workshops survived the fire and that despite the blaze everything was operating as usual.

He was told about the incident by the fire service while on holiday and called his workers to open the workshops - which were unaffected by fire - as normal. He said: "Fortunately there were people in the mosque and they noticed the fire.

"Why are these youths attacking people? They need to get a life and get a job.

"I was totally shocked but I have to get on with it . "Nothing happened to the workshops which is really important and we can carry just as we were."

Speaking about the incident worker Daniel Roberts, who specialises in designing and building staircases, said: "The fire service thought it might have been caused by an electrical fault but they've ruled that out.

"They're now investigating whether it was arson. We got the call from Paul and came over not long after it happened.

"There were police cars still here and the firefighters kept coming back to make sure the fire was definitely out. We're all determined to carry on - we're still working as normal."

John Newbold, who has been working at the joinery company for five years, said: "If it were youths doing this they really need to grow up."

Police are investigating the incident.

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CHARRED REMAINS: A fire ravaged parts of Paul Shields Joinery in Foleshill Pictures: Hannah McKay
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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Aug 13, 2011
Words:353
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