POLICE will prepare a coroner’s report on Friday’s blaze that ravaged Mount Pleasant, a historic rural homestead on the Riverina Highway east of Albury.
It left a damage bill of more than $500,000.
Police Insp Lynelle Rodwell said yesterday that, while the cause of the fire was still undetermined, it was not being treated as suspicious.
Insp Rodwell said the blaze started in the ceiling of the 155-year-old home when workers installing insulation in the roof were out to lunch at the Kinross Woolshed.
They may have left work lights switched on.
Because the fire inflicted more than $500,000 damage, a coroner’s report on the incident will have to be completed.
Mount Pleasant is believed to be one of the oldest houses in the Albury area, having briefly been a public house in the 1860s.
It was long owned by the Heath family and passed to a relative, the late Jim Paterson, about 11 years ago.
A history of Mount Pleasant written by a Heath family member claims the house was a hotel before 1858, when it hosted horse races.
In its first 15 years it had two owners and five unsuccessful proprietors before the Heaths bought it in the late 19th century and then ran it as a dairy farm.
Mr Paterson’s son, Ian, said yesterday that he visited the house when when his uncle and aunt, Fred and Mabel Heath, were there.
Mount Pleasant is now owned by businessman Shaun McKoy and police said he was living nearby while the home was being renovated.
It’s the second time Mr McKoy has fallen victim to fire this year.
His renovation business on Lincoln Causeway was damaged in a blaze last month.
Mr McKoy was too upset to talk about the fire on Friday and could not be contacted at the weekend.