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High St fire: New footage uncovered


Duo seen on CCTV near fire
Police have asked for help identifying individuals captured on CCTV near a suspicious fire in Carterton. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
Police are appealing for help to identify two people caught on camera near a blaze that destroyed several Carterton businesses last year. MARY ARGUE reports.

Police have made public an image of two people caught on camera the night a suspicious fire ripped through Carterton’s High St in October last year.

Police appealed to the public on Wednesday for help in identifying the pair.

The blurry image shows the duo in hoodies, caps, and covid masks, captured on CCTV in the vicinity of the blaze that destroyed multiple businesses.

Police appealed for information in the fire’s immediate aftermath and said investigations would continue.

Wairarapa Detective Senior Sergeant Barry Bysouth said the footage had needed restoration, resulting in a delayed release of the images.

“Police are asking for the public’s help to identify two people who were in the vicinity of the fire and who may be able to assist with the ongoing investigation,” he said.

A police spokesperson said the fire would have had “a huge impact” on businesses in Carterton.

Three businesses were gutted and a fourth severely damaged in the fire, which began in the early hours of October 7.


By the time the fire brigade arrived, the complex on the corner of Holloway St and High St was engulfed in flames.

Crews from across the region, and as far afield as Hutt Valley and Palmerston North, descended on Carterton shortly after midnight and stayed at the scene until 4am.

Fire and Emergency said the blaze was under control within an hour. However, it was a challenging night with the fire spreading across multiple shops.

Wairarapa Web Design, Madam Plum Boutique, Midway Barbershop, and Carterton Food Market were all affected.

At the time, Carterton was working through earthquake legislation, and Mayor Greg Lang described the fire as “devastating”.

One business owner said it was a bitter pill to swallow as money had recently been spent to bring the buildings up to code.

Fire and Emergency and police investigators suspected the fire started near Midway Barber.

A food truck with live entertainment utilised the empty site.

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