Nova Scotia

Suspicious fire destroys vacant church outside Sydney

St. John's Anglican Church has been empty for approximately 10 years.

St. John's Anglican Church has been empty for approximately 10 years

St. John's Anglican Church, a vacant church outside Sydney, N.S., was completely destroyed in an early morning fire that police are now investigating.

"There was no power or anything running into the church so as a result of that it was deemed suspicious," said Staff Sgt. Philip Ross with the Cape Breton Regional Police Service.

Police and the Westmount Volunteer Fire Department were called to the scene at 2618 Point Edward Highway at approximately 1:20 a.m. Sunday. 

Police say the church had been empty for approximately 10 years. 

'It was sad'

Barbara Watson lives in the Point Edward area and watched the church burn down. Generations of her husband's family attended the church. 

"My husband and I were married in that church 25 years ago," she said. 

​"I was down this morning to see [the church] in daylight. Just to see it in the rubble was for sure very sad."

Ross says security is on scene at the fire site. He says Monday the forensic identification unit will be sifting through debris and working with the fire marshal's office to determine the fire's cause.

Police says anyone with information on the fire should contact Crime Stoppers.


Anjuli Patil


Anjuli Patil is a reporter and occasional video journalist with CBC Nova Scotia's digital team.