A MAN has been jailed for two years after torching his housing association home - causing more than �43,000 of damage.

Roderick Lewis, 58, of Mainprize Road, Bullbrook, pleaded guilty to arson recklessly endangering life after pouring petrol around the loft of his house, lighting it with matches, then turning on gas appliances and leaving.

The fire brigade was called out to the incident at 10.45pm on February 22, and found the whole roof was ablaze.

They put out the fire but extensive damage had been caused and the building is still uninhabitable.

Detective Constable Iain Watkinson, investigating officer, said: "Lewis deliberately set this fire to his own house before leaving the property and walking off. His neighbours could have been seriously injured if the fire had spread.

"I am pleased with the sentence, which reflects the serious consequences Lewis's crime could have had if not for the swift response of the police and fire service." Lewis gave his plea and was sentenced at Reading Crown Court on Friday.