The community must unite to restore a local landmark to its former glory after this morning’s "tragic" blaze at Ewell Court House, Epsom’s MP has said.

Chris Grayling said he was upset to hear the "awful news" and believes the historic, Grade II-listed building, in Ewell Court Avenue, where fire broke out at 2.30am, will need a complete restoration.

He said: "This is obviously a tragic event for the whole area. 

"Ewell Court House is a real landmark and we have to make sure that the whole community comes together to make sure that it’s restored to its former glory.

"Unfortunately when this sort of thing happens the only response we can have is to get together and sort it out."

Firefighters may now have to remove the chimneys after the building suffered considerable structural damage.

Thelma Goldsmith, of Manor Drive, Ewell, who is secretary of the Friends of Ewell Court Park, said: "It's really sad. We all use the cafe regularly and there's already been a big fight to save the library. 

"We have got such a lovely community going now around the house."

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Rebecca Jones, communications manager at CSH Surrey, which provides NHS community health services, said 40 members of staff who work in the offices adjacent to house are working from other locations this morning.

She explained that although still referred to as an NHS clinic, no patients visit the site which is purely used for administrative purposes.

She said some members of staff were let into the offices this morning but had to leave due to structural damage at Ewell Court House.  It is not known how long the offices will be shut.

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Ewell councillor Michael Arthur, who celebrated his golden wedding anniversary at the house two years ago, said he was shocked to hear of the news at 8am from fellow court ward councillor Clive Woodbridge.

Coun Arthur said: "One wonders how it happened - whether it was an electrical fault or arson or anything deliberate.

"I suspect it will take a year to 18 months to fix if it is very serious.

"It’s a nice, delightful building in a beautiful setting and a very desirable and important asset to the council and the community.

"The house has very interesting architectural features and hopefully it can be fully restored.  It just takes time.

"I was at Windsor Castle collecting my MBE earlier this year and it has been restored excellently since the 1992 fire, although you can see where the building looks newer."

Sheona Harley, who was married at Ewell Court House nearly five years ago, said: "It's devastating. It's such a shame, it's got such a historical background.

"If people have got their weddings booked, it's going to be heartbreaking for them."

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Did you use Ewell Court House?  Contact Hardeep Matharu on the newsdesk with your reaction to today's fire by calling 020 8722 6346 or emai