BASILDON golf club's pavilion was left devasted in a suspected arson attack.

Firefighters were called to the blaze in the single storey pavilion, which was used as a social club and bar, at 2.30am this morning (Wed).

Four fire crews fought the flames before the fire was finally put out two hours later.

No-one was injured.

The clubhouse was left a charred shell.

Nigel Dilley, station commander for Basildon Fire Station, said: "The fire spread throughout the building which was devasted, completely destroyed.

"We are relieved we managed to stop the flames spreading, as there were houses nearby."

The fire is being treated as suspicious and a police and fire service investigation has been launched.

Owners Jack Barker Ltd has controversially been given planning permission to redesign the contours of the course using thousands of tonnes of soil, rubble and other debris. Ron Maydon, managing director of Jack Barker Ltd, said: "That building was due to be demolished in the not too distant future. It has not been used for some time. "I am relieved that the fire didn't spread to the existing clubhouse."