An arsonist has been jailed for more than five years after setting fire to a homeless hostel.
Ben Wilson, 20, set fire to the Braintree Emergency Night Shelter in Braintree High Street on Friday, February 13.
He had been evicted the previous night for continually breaking the tenancy rules.
Two of the residents were at the hostel on the night of the fire and one of them found Wilson asleep in the shower room at about 7pm.
He told Wilson he was not allowed in the building.
About ten minutes later, the smoke alarm was set off
One of the residents was forced to flee the shower naked and jump 15ft from a second floor window.
Fortunately members of the public alerted a passing bus driver, who manoeuvred his double decker bus close enough for the man to jump onto the top.
The fire destroyed the listed building and damaged neighbouring premises.
Wilson, of no fixed address, admitted a charge of arson with intent at court in June and was sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday, November 27 to five years and four months in prison.
Investigating officer Dc Andy Young, of Braintree CID, said: “This was a devastating fire. Wilson acted out of revenge and his actions continue to have an effect on his victims.
“The resident who was forced to jump from the window continues to suffer physical and psychological effects.
“The fire was also devastating for the people involved in the charity that ran the hostel, which played a vital role in helping homeless people in the town.
“And neighbouring businesses have also had to relocate after their premises were damaged.
The judge who sentenced Wilson commended the bus driver and members of the public who came to the aid of the hostel residents.