Calls for CCTV to be reintroduced at park after 'deliberate' car fire

PUBLISHED: 08:00 31 August 2019

The fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April Lewis

The fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April Lewis

Archant

A car fire at a Worle park is thought to have been deliberate.

The fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April LewisThe fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April Lewis

Police were called to Castle Batch park in the early hours of Sunday morning after a car had been driven onto the grass and set alight.

Concerned neighbours called the emergency services, who confirmed to the Mercury its cause was deliberate.

Antisocial behaviour and arson incidents at the park, in Bishops Avenue, have been regular occurrences over the past year.

The fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April LewisThe fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: April Lewis

In November, a roundabout was set on fire by vandals, a swing set removed due to damage and a bin was stolen.

Four incidents of criminal damage were then reported to Avon and Somerset police, but in a letter to residents they acknowledged 'this is a much more common problem'.

MORE: Rise of antisocial behaviour and arson at children's park.

The park is owned and managed by North Somerset Council, which is also responsible for CCTV management, while Weston Town Council provides equipment for its play area.

North Somerset is reviewing CCTV provision across the area as its systems are out of date.

Plans to upgrade systems to aid with prosecutions and crime prevention will cost an estimated £350,000.

The fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: José RecordThe fire is thought to have been deliberate. Picture: José Record

North Worle councillor Marc Aplin said a lack of CCTV in the area is 'unacceptable'.

He said: "Castle Batch is a wonderful space at the heart of Worle's community, so it's important we do everything we can to look after it.

"Myself and councillors Jan Holloway and Marcia Pepperall will continue to work closely with the police, schools and residents through the North Worle Forum to discuss what else we could be doing to tackle this kind of antisocial behaviour.

"We will also use this latest incident to again press upon the council how important it is that CCTV returns to the area.

"It's unacceptable that we've been without it for over a year now despite numerous concerning and reoccurring issues."

MORE: 'Mindless' vandals destroy play equipment at park.

Police confirmed they are investigating the incident.

A spokesman said: "We received a report from the fire service of a car on fire at about 12.13am on Sunday morning in Castle Batch park.

"The vehicle was completely burnt out. We are treating the incident as arson.

"Anyone with information is asked to contact us quoting reference 5219196246."

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