Legoland: Fire destroys part of theme park in Denmark

A fire has destroyed part of the Legoland theme park in western Denmark.

Officials say the blaze is believed to have been caused by a short circuit and has wrecked a section of Miniland, an area of the attraction with replicas of famous buildings made of Lego bricks.

Legoland spokesperson Kasper Tangsig said video surveillance showed the fire began in one of the electric cars that runs on rails which was being recharged overnight.

Having erupted at 4am local time, the blaze was quickly extinguished - but a local newspaper Jydske Vestkysten reported a number of the replica buildings melted.

The fire also destroyed an area built to resemble a small-scale version of a Danish port, Mr Tangsig added.

The video indicated there was "no other activity at that time," he said, "so we are fairly certain that it must be a short circuit".

Mr Tangsig said electrical equipment in the rest of Miniland will be inspected in the coming days but that it was too early to say what will happen to the affected area.

Denmark's Legoland is the original park and opened in 1968 next to the Lego toymaker's headquarters and factory, in Billund.

The park has several rides, restaurants and play areas where visitors can build with the colourful plastic bricks.

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At the heart of Legoland is Miniland, where some 20 million bricks were used to create miniature cities and replicas of global sites.

They include the Kennedy Space Centre, the canals in Amsterdam, the waterfront of Norway's second largest city, Bergen, and the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai.

Denmark's is one of eight Legoland parks around the world, with an estimated 1.6 million visitors annually.

Lego was founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen.

The name derives from two Danish words, leg and godt, which together mean "play well".

It was created without the knowledge that lego in Latin means "I assemble".

In 2005, Lego sold the Legoland parks to Merlin, which runs the parks and 20 Legoland Discovery Centres.