A HISTORIC mansion house on the 'Scots buildings at risk' register has been damaged in a fire which police say appeared to have been started deliberately.

Police are investigating the blaze at the derelict Carnsalloch House near Dumfries which has been described as a target for vandals, fire-raisers and drug-users.

It is the third blaze to hit the building in three years.

It has attracted visitors as a result of its reputation amongst some as "one of the most haunted buildings in Scotland".  

Police Scotland and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service were alerted to the blaze at 7pm on Sunday.

HeraldScotland:

Police say from an initial investigation "it appears a fire has been deliberately started within one of the outbuildings, as well as within the main building."

In March, 2016, the Category A listed house suffered damaged to the main part of the house at Kirkton, with floors and the roof burnt out following a fire.

At the time of the 2016 fire, Detective Inspector Bryan Lee of Dumfries CID said: “Carnsalloch House is an isolated property to the east of Kirkton Village which has been unoccupied for some time.

"However, I am aware that local youths frequent the grounds of the property and there is information that in the past homeless people may have sheltered there.

"There is no information that anyone was sheltering within the house at the time of the fire, however, due to the condition of the building, neither the fire service nor the police are able to get access."

The mansion house at Kirkton was built in the middle of the 18th Century, with a number of extensions added over the years.

From the late 1960s until about 2000 it was owned by the Leonard Cheshire foundation.

Plans for a housing development at the site were rejected and two years ago the developers sought a council review of the decision.

In 2015, another suspicious fire at the property destroyed an annexe built in the 1970s.

Later the owner warned that the mansion may not survive another five years without extensive renovation.

HeraldScotland:

Ian Foster applied to build six homes close to the building to fund the renovation of the house.

But planners raised concerns that proposals do not meet a "high standard" of design.

In 2007, the north wing suffered an alleged arson attack resulting in the loss of the roof and the west side of the wing.

A further blazed damaged the main porch and ground floor of the main house,

A security fence and security guard were said to have been placed on site during the summer of the following year  to protect the property from vandalism.