A SERIAL arsonist who was jailed for setting fire to his ex-wife’s bins torched his ex-girlfriend’s flat the day after he came out of prison.

Darren Lomax was jailed in January for setting fire to his ex-wife’s wheelie bins in Wallbrook Grove, Farnworth.

He had also set fire to her garden the previous year.

After being released from prison on February 14, and having nowhere to stay, former partner Emma Perkin offered him a bed for the night at her flat in Felton Walk, Astley Bridge.

But while she was away from the flat, he set her living room on fire, destroying clothes, furniture, electrical equipment and sentimental items, Bolton Crown Court heard.

Lindsay Thomas, prosecuting, said the severity of the fire was so great that the TV melted and fire investigation officers found the blaze had been started deliberately in two areas of the room.

Lomax, aged 38, of no fixed address, was found outside the first floor flat, claiming he had fallen asleep after drinking heavily and had accidentally started the fire.

He pleaded guilty to arson, being reckless as to whether life was endangered.

Nicholas Ross, defending, said: “This was not an act of retaliation. This was an act of recklessness in the worst sense.

“It was an act to harm himself rather than anyone else.

“He felt isolated and was emotionally very low — effectively he messed up and wanted to die.”

In a victim statement, Ms Perkin said she was “devastated” by the arson and now has a bill from Bolton at Home for repairs to her flat.

Judge Elliot Knopf passed a sentence for public protection, jailing Lomax for four years and ordering he be placed on licence for a further two years.

He also made a restraining order prohibiting him from contacting Ms Perkin.

The judge said there was a pattern of crimes developing whereby Lomax visited the homes of former partners and started fires.