CCTV shows arson suspect

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CCTV footage of a cyclist who is suspected of setting fire to an elderly couple’s home has been released by detectives.

A camera installed on a nearby property in Castle Bytham captured the cyclist heading to and from the cottage belonging to Peter and Sylvia Cox, aged 82 and 74 respectively.

Their home in High Street was set alight earlier this month by an arsonist who has targeted the couple three times previously. This time, their home was devastated and the pensioners had to be rescued from the first floor by neighbours.

Sadly, their beloved greyhound Toby was killed in the blaze.

Detective Inspector Dave Swan is leading the investigation into the arson attack.

He said: “I appreciate that the CCTV footage is of poor quality but it may just jog someone’s memory and encourage them to contact us with the name of a suspect.”

The CCTV footage can be seen on the Journal’s website at

It is not known whether the cyclist is male or female, but he/she appears to be wearing a backpack and riding a cycle with drop-down, racer-style handle bars.

A photograph of the remains of a firework believed to have been used by the perpetrator to start the blaze has also been issued in the hope it might look familiar to someone.

Det insp Swan said: “I would ask anyone who has any information about its origins, or suggestions as to who may have bought it or owned it to contact us.”

Mr Cox spoke to the Journal last week about their terrifying ordeal, stressing that they have no idea why they have become the victims of such a hate-filled vendetta.

The couple have moved away from the village temporarily, fearing another attack.

Anyone with information, or who witnessed anything suspicious in the village at the time, is asked to call police on 0300 111 0300 quoting incident number 17 of May 4. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.