THE owners of a listed building that was severely damaged by fire last week have thanked the community for its support.

More than 50 firefighters from across Hampshire were called to the historic Bere Mill, in London Road, Whitchurch, in the evening on Wednesday last week, with the blaze reaching the ground floor, first floor, and roof of the building.

The 18th century water mill was badly damaged in the fire, though no one was hurt.

Rupert Nabarro, from the mill, said: “People have been immensely kind, and we are very grateful. It was a very serious fire and it will take a great deal of work to fix it.

“We are grateful that no one was hurt, and the fire service were magnificent. People have been terrific and very helpful, and we are grateful.

“We are certainly going to repair the building to its former beauty and rebuild it as it was before.”

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service sent 12 fire engines to the incident, getting the call at around 10.10pm.

Crews from Whitchurch, Overton, Andover, Sutton Scotney, Winchester, Basingstoke, Eastleigh and Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to the scene.

The mill has an historic past, providing paper for the Bank of England in 1716.

Bere Mill also is a part of the National Open Garden Scheme, where people can visit the gardens inside the grounds of the family home three days a year in exchange for charitable donations.

The owners still intend to open the garden in early March, as repairs to the property get underway.

It has also been confirmed the Hampshire Garden Festival will go ahead as planned on June 10, held in aid of the North Hampshire Medical Fund.

The butchery at the site will also be open on Saturdays as usual.