Arson latest issue at old site
PUBLISHED: 11:12 11 July 2015
A DELIBERATE fire is just the latest in a number of antisocial problems at an ex-petrol station site in Burnham.
The grounds around Tuckers Garage in Victoria Street have recently been targeted by members of the homeless community, while groups of youngsters have also congregated on the site.
But on Sunday morning, at around 2am, the situation escalated when an arson attack was carried out on the hoardings around the former petrol station, requiring firefighters to tackle the flames with several hose reel jets.
The area has laid empty since Tuckers was demolished in 2007, and legal wranglings have stalled the future of the development. Last year, property developer Abracore was given planning permission to build 35 retirement apartments on the site, but building work is still get to get under way.
More recently in June, Burnham and Highbridge town councillor Kate Lawson reported how nearby residents had been complaining the site was being used by young people playing loud music and as a skate park.
Town centre manager Bev Milner Simonds told the Mercury: “There’s two aspects to it. The fire has pushed Sedgemoor [District Council] towards finding the homeless man somewhere to stay, and having interacted with the young people using the area as a skate park who have always been polite, and given the time of the fire it would be too easy to say it was them.
“We have been working with the owners of the site and the fence and gate are in the process of being repaired.”