A FIRE broke out in a haystack in a field off Halewick Lane in Sompting yesterday afternoon.
The blaze engulfed the stack of 50 large bales which was well alight when crews from Worthing and Shoreham arrived at the scene.
Crews spent most of Sunday evening getting the fire under control and damping down around the perimeter to stop the flames from spreading.
Firefighters believe the blaze was started deliberately.
Whoever raised the alarm at 4.40pm said they had seen a group of children trying to set light to the bale shortly before it went up in flames.
One crew remained at the scene overnight to monitor the fire, which is now being left to burn out under supervision.