TWO teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of arson after a fire at Smithills Open Farm.

The blaze ripped through a barn on Monday morning.

A worker arrived at the farm at 5am to do morning milking and raised the alarm after seeing the fire at the barn, which is away from the publicly accessible parts of the popular Smithills Dean Road tourist attraction.

No animals were harmed.

Three fire crews from Bolton and Horwich tackled the blaze, which they said was well established when they arrived, destroying the timber barn and its contents and sending up a thick plume of smoke.

Until last week the barn was used as stabling for horses, but they were moved to the fields to make way for a delivery of 20 tons of straw and feed for animals.

A 14-year-old and 17-year-old have been arrested on suspicion of arson and are being quizzed by detectives.