Detectives from East Surrey CID are appealing for information after a barn fire in Bletchingley caused around £100,000 damage.

The fire, which police are calling “suspicious,” took hold in the early hours of yesterday.

The alarm was raised at around 1.20am, when motorists driving along the M23 reported a cloud of smoke impairing their vision.

Police believe the smoke hazard came from the barn fire.

Investigating officer Detective Constable David Fair, said: "Not only did the offenders cause around £100,000 worth of damage to the barn and items stored in it, they also put the lives of motorists at risk, which is completely not acceptable.”

He said: "I would appeal to anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area during the evening of the offence, to share this information with police. “It is believed those responsible may have visited the property before starting the fire, as there is evidence of trespassers at the location.”

Hay, industrial machinery and fuel was stored in the barn.

Anyone with information is urged to contact Surrey Police on 101, quoting reference 45140040893. Alternatively, people can call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.