April 17th 2024

Urgent Action Call To Identify Arsonists

Councillor Phil Bateman and Councillor David Jones today urged the West Midlands Police and the Local Authority to take very seriously the deliberate use of fire to destroy property on Ashmore Park.

Councillor Phil Bateman said " We are being plagued by young people who are arsonists. It is frankly a terrible thing to say, but I believe it is the truth. Yet I do not see any great investigation taking place to try and track down these people who are causing damage to the public realm.

I am not accusing the police or the Authorities of doing nothing. But it appears that there is one arsonist action taking place only to be followed by another!

It has been reported to me that arsonists have again struck on the Ashmore Park, this time burning rubbish bins by the skate park in the last week.

The reports I am receiving suggest that in the last week, two bins have been burnt there, severely damaging the tarmac and causing the skate park to become littered with the after effects of the fire. This is extremely dangerous to skateboarders, since it only takes a tiny pebble jamming under a wheel to cause in serious
injury to the skate boarder.

This is a very serious matter In March 2006 I reported on school children stealing wheelie Bins in Kitchen Lane and setting them on fire. In January 07 I reported how the former sports pavilion on the Ashmore Park was lying derelict and had been set on fireafter being vandalised.

In February I reported on 6-7 youths and two girls stealing wheelie bins from Russell Close taking them onto the Park and setting fire to them. Even last night as Councillor Jones and I sat at our Advice Surgery we received a small deputation of residents living locally who were concerned about their safety as a fire had been started recently in a garage that they overlook!"

Councillor Dave Jones said " I support Councillor Bateman in his comments. This is a very serious matter, and I would appeal to the public to provide information that will allow these people who are a danger to themselves as well as the public realm, to be identified and dealt with. I would also like to inform residents that both Councillor Bateman and I will be seeking a meeting with our local Police Chief to discuss with him this and other local issues."

Author: Phil Bateman

Article Date: 31st March 2007