An historic building has gone up in flames on Westbury Road, in a fire that is believed to be deliberately lit.
The house was fully ablaze by the time the Tasmania Fire Service arrived on the scene, at 3.47pm on Saturday, December 22.
Four crews responded to the incident, as well as Tasmania Police, after community members called in multiple alerts to Triple 0.
There was already a large plume of smoke visible by the time the TFS arrived at the “dilapidated” house, and the roof fell in a short time after their arrival.
The fire started in the front room and travelled to the rest of the building through the ceiling space.
“There’s no front door or back door, and it’s in quite a bad state of disrepair,” Launceston station officer Danny Guy said.
“It’s very hard to estimate the cost of damage, but you’d have to replace all of the roof.”
The TFS was able to contain the blaze to the structure and prevent it from spreading to surrounding buildings.
It under control by about 5pm, with the TFS undertaking further dampening down into the evening.
Launceston station officer Roger Whittle said there was no likely accidental cause of the fire
“There was no power connected and no other evidence that it could have started on its own,” he said.
The building is the former gatehouse of the Mt Pleasant estate; a relic of the once grand property holding owned by prominent Launceston figure John Crookes, built between 1863-65.
However, it has been abandoned for more than a decade.
It is not the first time the TFS have been called to the site, and it has been the site of squatting.
Owners are interstate and police have attempted to contact them.