Park out of action for summer holidays
CHILDREN are facing a summer without the use of a play park which was set on fire.
South Gloucestershire Council says it has yet to find funding to repair the slide and safety matting at Springfield Park in Mangotsfield, damaged in the incident on April 30.
A spokesman confirmed the initial estimate of £30,000 to repair the damage, caused when a flammable liquid was poured on to the safety matting and set on fire by a teenage boy.
The spokesman said: “We’re still exploring options in terms of how we will fund the repairs and replacement. Work can’t start until the money has been found.Unfortunately we’re not going to be able to say this will be in time for the summer holidays.”
The Voice understands a meeting to update residents and explore funding options will be held later in July. Councillors, including Rachael Hunt and Michael Bell, are working with residents and park users to reform a committee to manage the park. Among their priorities will be any measures that could reduce the chances of another arson attack happening.
A 14-year-old boy has admitted starting the fire.
Police have confirmed that the boy, from Emersons Green, has been referred to a youth panel for a decision on how he will be dealt with. Three other children interviewed – a 14-year-old boy and girls aged 13 and 14 – will face no further action.
Sergeant Stuart Cumine said: “This irresponsible behaviour has destroyed play equipment used by local children. The incident also put unnecessary extra pressure on the emergency services.“However this young man has done the right thing by taking responsibility for his actions. He has shown remorse and is keen to make amends.”