Speaking from the site of the blaze, the National Trust’s Director General, Helen Ghosh, said:
“The fire is now out but the scale of the damage to the mansion has been devastating. The house is now essentially a shell, most of the roof, ceiling and floors have collapsed into the bottom of the building.
“There is perhaps one room that is relatively untouched but, other than that, the interior is extensively damaged. The external walls are still standing.
“It’s a terrible sight. We have saved some significant items but certainly not everything that we wanted to save.
“We have a very well-rehearsed plan to get key items out of houses but it’s still too early to say just how much we have been able to save.
“It will clearly take some time to assess the full scale of the damage and to then consider what the options are for the house.
“The most important thing is that no-one was injured and everyone was safely evacuated. Although I’m upset by what has happened, I also feel huge pride at the tremendous work of our staff and volunteers in dealing with this terrible event. The local team have had marvellous support from colleagues from neighbouring properties and specialists from across the Trust.
“We’ve also had a large number of messages of support from members and the public – which we truly appreciate.
“I would also like to thank the amazing efforts of the fire brigade. We’ll continue to work closely with them over the coming days.”
We’re asking our supporters not to visit Clandon Park at this time to offer help as the incident is still being managed on site, and a fire investigation is underway.