A guidebook aiming to reduce the damage caused by arson attacks on schools through improved design will be released next month.
The report is to be distributed free to local education authorities, architects and contractors by insurance group Zurich Municipal.

It recommends that architects ensure that there are proper fire breaks in walls and pay close attention to security, lighting and waste storage areas.

Larry Strokes, underwriting manager for Zurich Municipal, said designers could play an important role in stopping fires in schools. Arson attacks cost £87m this year.

Strokes added that installing sprinkler systems would also help prevent fires from spreading. He claimed that savings on insurance premiums would repay the costs in a few years.