A devastating fire at a High Wycombe church is believed to have been started deliberately, police have said - as they launch an arson investigation. 

A fire at the Rutland Avenue Methodist Church on March 31 appears to have been started "several hours" before emergency services were called at around 10.50pm. 

Police arrived after they were called to the scene by Bucks Fire and Rescue. 

The church suffered substantial damage. 

Investigating officer PC Gemma Brown, based at High Wycombe police station, said: “I am appealing for anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious in the Rutland Avenue area on Sunday, March 31.

“This incident has severely damaged an important community building and I urge anyone with any information to come forward."

Call 101 quoting reference number 43190097750 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.