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Teenage arsonist admits starting Brownhills pub fire

By John Scott | Brownhills | Crime | Published:

An 18-year-old from Cannock has admitted setting light to an empty pub in Walsall almost two years ago – and trying to get somebody else to take the blame.

Firefighters tackle the Rising Sun blaze. Photo: Burntwood and Cannock Chase Community First Responders

Joshua Wright pleaded guilty at Wolverhampton Crown Court to committing arson at the disused Rising Sun in Brownhills on October 4 in 2017 and six days later encouraging a young woman of similar age to wrongly admit to the offence when questioned by the police.

The damage caused by the blaze, which gutted the building, was estimated to have been worth up to £1.4 million.

Since closing in 2008, the Rising Sun had been subject to numerous cases of vandalism.

Before its closure, it was one of the longest-established pubs in the West Midlands and it is believed there has been a pub at the site since 1769.

The building was owned by Marston’s and was sold in 2009 to Eastern Leisure Ltd but a mooted makeover failed to materialise.

Wright from Bevan Lee Road, West Chadsmoor, was remanded for pre-sentence reports and is next expected to appear at the same court on July 16.

John Scott

By John Scott
Reporter/News Feature Writer

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