Arson attack destroys children’s play area

Friends group members Ian Bain and Sarah Ainslie, with her daughters, Grace and Lola.
Friends group members Ian Bain and Sarah Ainslie, with her daughters, Grace and Lola.

Arsonists torched a children’s play area destroying equipment in a park.

Firefighters were called to Outwood Park at around 10pm on Sunday.

No-one was hurt in the incident but the fire destroyed equipment including a park bench, and damaged the trim trail surrounding it.

But the Friends of Outwood Park, a group of volunteers who work to improve the area, say the arson attack has upset park-goers.

Sarah Ainslie, chairwoman of the Friends group, said: “It’s incredibly disappointing, we are all volunteers who give up our time voluntarily.

“We are parents with young children and we work too.

“The time that we give up is precious and then you get the odd minority that do things like this.

“I don’t understand if it’s young people why they would destroy their own facilities?

“People are upset about it, it’s just anti-social behaviour and it’s not something we want in our area.

“All it has done is destroy things for other people who enjoy the park.”

A spokeswoman for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said crews from Wakefield Fire Station attended the scene and extinguished the flames.

The Friends of Outwood Park is a volunteer group which meets every two months.

The group aims to improve the park and applies for grants and funding bids for future projects.

They also organise litter-picks and events.

It is looking for new members to join its ranks and help improve the park.

The next meeting takes place at Ledger Lane Working Men’s Club, in Outwood on September 7.

Members of the group will meet at the club from 7.30pm.