DETECTIVES investigating the suspected arson attack at The Crooked House in Himley have moved to quash rumours of an arrest.

Staffordshire Police has said CCTV is being trawled and forensics and witness accounts are being worked through as they try to establish what happened that led to the destruction of the landmark pub.

A severe fire last Saturday (August 5) left the building a burnt-out shell, just days after its sale was confirmed, and it was later demolished by a digger on Monday, much to the horror of pubgoers, locals and people across the country.

Halesowen News: The rubble remains of The Crooked House pubThe rubble remains of The Crooked House pub (Image: Andy Cashmore)

Police said today that they continue to work through a number of lines of enquiry but a spokesperson said: “We understand there is some speculation about people being arrested, this is not the case currently.

“We fully recognise the impact of the fire and later demolition of the building on the community, given the significance of this distinctive and popular attraction.

“We’d like to provide further reassurance that the building was not demolished while under police control. Following the conclusion of the examination by fire investigators and our own investigators, the site was released back to the owner.

“Prior to this, South Staffordshire Council officers met with the landowner to ensure that the site was left safe. As has been publicly stated by the council, advice was offered to the landowner to partially remove some elements of the building with the purpose of making the building safe. Advice was also offered to use fencing and security staff to maintain the security of the site.

“As the site had been returned to the landowner a police presence was no longer required on the site."

Halesowen News: The Crooked House after the August 5 fireThe Crooked House after the August 5 fire (Image: Jacob King / PA Wire)

Meanwhile, South Staffordshire Council is conducting an investigation into the demolition of the entire building, following the fire, which it is understood occurred without appropriate permissions.

Police say they have been trying to provide regular and timely updates on the investigation and called for patience as officers work their way through evidence.

The force spokesperson added: “There has been considerable speculation circulating within communities and online which, while understandable, has been unhelpful.

“There is significant work and liaison required with a number of partners which needs to be completed. All of this takes time.

“We continue to appeal to anyone with any information, not matter how insignificant it may seem to get in touch via 101 or by using Live Chat on our website.”

People can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.