Firm’s office ‘gutted’ in blaze

A Worthing-based firm had premises ‘gutted’ after a tramp’s belongings were
set on fire outside its office.

Two of Carpenter
tax offices were badly damaged after trolleys containing gas
canisters outside the building were set alight, which could cost as much as
£40,000 to repair. A local bag lady used the trolleys to look after her

Practice director Chris Coopey told Accountancy Age that despite the
severity of the blaze, it had little adverse effect on their services to clients
as the firm had moved to a paperless model three months earlier.

‘We’ve been scanning docs for the past year. [The fire] has had a very, very
small effect on clients. Our IT data is also backed up,’ said Coopey.

‘We had a business continuity plan, we felt that was very important.’

500 tax files were smoke and water damaged in the blaze, but they are already
being dried and deodorised and will be back in the office next week.

Five staff have been relocated until repairs are complete.

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The Argus’ story

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