See video of the fire, which witnesses said caused flames 70ft high

The owner of a 34-metre Sunseeker looked on helplessly as his superyacht was gutted by fire at the Sunseeker yard in Poole on Friday night.

The millionaire Mexican businessman had flown to the UK to take delivery of the boat but could only watch as the Sunseeker 34M Yacht, worth around £7m, burned to the gunwhales.

More than 50 fire fighters responded to the blaze, which started shortly after 11pm. It was eventually brought under control in the early hours of Saturday, after witnesses reported seeing flames 70ft high.

The cause of the fire is not known at present, but early speculation has pinned the blame on a lightning strike.

Eyewitness Peter James told The Telegraph: “I’ve never seen anything like it. It started off as just a few flames but in minutes the whole boat was alight.”

“At one point the flames were about 20-metres high.”

Stewart McIntrye, chief operating officer of Sunseeker, told the Dorset Echo: “The insurers have already been notified, we did that during the night. A surveyor has been appointed. We will go through our standard proceedures.”