HEARTLESS yobs have targeted a Knottingley charity shop in a spate of arson attacks.
Staff at the Sue Ryder store on Hill Top say they are “disgusted” after bins outside the outlet were set on fire four times in the last ten months.
Police chiefs say the most recent blaze – during the evening of Tuesday July 31 and early hours of Wednesday August 1 – could have become “uncontrollable” and spread to the main building.
Michelle Henderson, shop manager, said: “This is the second time the bins have been set on fire in the last six to eight weeks.
“We’ve only just had them fixed and they’ve set them on fire again. It’s disgusting, it’s vandalism.
“It’s dangerous to those who are doing it and for people walking past. What happens if a spark flies off? It could injure someone.” She added: “Since I’ve been here we’ve put a cage around the bins, but it hasn’t stopped them. Why they’re doing it, I don’t know. We’re a charity and every time something like this happens, it comes out of our costs.”
Pontefract and Knottingley neighbourhood policing team (NPT) is appealing for witnesses to last week’s attack.
Sgt Alan Studd of the NPT said: “While the damage to the bins and cage is of low value there was a significant risk that the fire could have become uncontrollable, endangering those responsible or potentially setting the main building alight.
“I cannot understand why anyone would attack a charity shop – an organisation which helps disadvantaged individuals and families.
“Inquiries with regards to this matter are continuing and I can assure the public that offenders will be dealt with very severely.”
Anyone with information should call the police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.