A PART of Dorchester Market has been sealed off to the public and may have to be taken out of use after a fire.

The damaged area is in the North Linneys, the former animal sheds, between the redundant auction ring and the market café.

Dorchester’s joint markets panel heard on Wednesday that fencing has been brought in to keep people away from the area while a structural report is prepared to decide if, once repaired, the area can continue to be used.

Said Community Safety Officer Graham Duggan: “There is concern that the area, structurally, may not be good which may call into question the future use of the area.”

Mr Duggan told councillors that it was not believed the fire had been started deliberately.

Other sections of the Linneys have previously been fenced off after complaints from Great Western Road residents, whose properties back onto the market, that the covered sheds were being used by young people late into the evening and had, occasionally, been used by rough sleepers.