Police have appealed for witnesses after blasts like gun fire woke residents of George Lane in Marlborough in the early hours of Monday morning when a car burst into flames at Skurrays Garage.

Firefighters were called to the forecourt at 1.05am where a Vauxhall Corsa was alight and the police are treating it as suspected arson.

A fire crew from Marlborough spent an hour tackling the blaze, which destroyed the car.

Watch manager Adie Cripps said: “I got the police involved because I believed it was of suspicious origin. The car was just sat outside so there was no reason for it to catch alight.”

The car was privately owned and parked near to the mechanics’ garage.

James Ralph-Jones, service manager at Skurrays, found the burnt out car when he arrived at work on Monday.

He said: “I was quite shocked, You don’t come in every day and find a car burnt on the forecourt, so it was terrible especially as it was a customer’s car.

"The battery on the car was disconnected and had been for a couple of weeks so there wasn’t any charge in the car.”

Nichola Tong, 45, a dental hygienist, of George Lane was woken by an explosion. She said: “It sounded like gunshot. My husband got up and tentatively went to look out the window and saw that the car was on fire.

“We were worried about a bigger explosion if the fuel tank exploded, especially as there had been a series of smaller explosions throwing burning debris into the road.”

Police are appealing to any witnesses to come forward.

Sergeant Clare Wallace said: “We believe the incident to be arson. We are trying to track down the owner who we haven’t had a response from yet but the garage is assisting us with our inquiries.”