A fire in an empty house in Christchurch overnight is believed to have been deliberately lit.

Firefighters were called to the house on Frankleigh St in Somerfield after receiving multiple calls about 2.20am.

The back of the house and the ceiling were well ablaze when firefighters arrived, a southern fire communications spokesman said.

Two high-pressure units and firefighters with breathing apparatuses tackled the blaze.


The fire was being treated as suspicious.

Police guarded the scene overnight.

A Fire Safety officer will examine the house this morning.