Police are appealing for information after a suspected arson attack in Amersham led to residents evacuating on Saturday morning.

At around 4.10am in Park Place, the fire service attended fires in two blocks of flats, which are believed to have been started deliberately.

The fires originated in communal bin areas on the ground floor of two separate blocks and five crews from Amersham, Beaconsfield , High Wycombe and Maidenhead attended.

A mattress was set alight in one bin and in the other, all the contents were set on fire.

Some residents were evacuated from the flats but were able to return to their homes soon after the scene was made safe.

Thames Valley Police officers arrived at Park Place and put scene watches in place in order to carry out an investigation and to protect residents from harm.

Investigating officer, PC Richard Stephens, based at Amersham police station, said residents could easily have become trapped in the fire.

“These fires could easily have caused people to be seriously injured, as they were started in communal bin areas directly below and adjacent to occupied flats where residents would have been asleep at the time,” he said.

“Had the fires continued to grow and spread, residents on the upper floors could have become trapped.

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“We suspect that the two fires were started almost simultaneously and due to their proximity, it is likely that the same offender or offenders are responsible for them both.

“It is possible that a resident on one of the upper floors may have seen or heard something immediately prior to the incident, so I am appealing for anyone who has any information which they think could help our investigation to please call the Thames Valley Police non-emergency number on 101.”