0 Pavilion gutted by suspected arson attack

Police are hunting suspected arsonists after The Ashes tennis pavilion was destroyed by fire last Thursday evening.

Crews from Howden fire station arrived at the scene just after 6pm to find the pavilion well alight and had to call for immediate back-up from Goole fire station. Police were also called to the scene after arson was suspected as the cause of the blaze.

Chair of The Ashes Wendy Curtis said she was 'devastated' when she saw the fire raging through the wooden pavilion.

She told the Goole Times: "The Trust and the people of Howden work so hard and the park is run on a shoestring, then something like this happens.

"It was devastating when I first saw it. We have had the odd problem in the past but never anything to this extent."

As the pavilion, which was used to store playing equipment such as tennis nets and maintenance equipment, was made from wood it was not insured and with funds running low it is not known when it will be replaced.

"This is such a waste and very unnecessary. We will just have to wait and see what happens now, there is currently no money to rebuild the pavilion but when we do find the money it will be built in a better withstanding material," added Wendy.

The Ashes Playing Field Committee have put in months of hard work to raise funds to help upgrade and repair areas of Howden's most used play area and have recently unveiled a new games area.

Wendy said: "It is now in its 80th year and we have got a great children's area, then something like this happens - so it is like taking one step forward and two steps back.

"The fire will have affected a lot of people. The bowls team for one, who are a very good team, had some equipment stored in the pavilion and the tennis posts and nets were also stored in there for the new games area. It is such a waste."

The cause of the fire is not known but Humberside Police have said they have investigated to see whether or not it was started deliberately.

A police spokesperson said: "Police investigated an offence of arson. Between 5.30pm and 6.30pm on Thursday at Ashes Playing Fields, Treeton Road, Howden, a wooden shed used for storage was set on fire.

"The shed was destroyed. It is understood to have contained tennis nets and posts, a lawnmower, fertiliser spread, wheelbarrow, garden furniture, and six sets of bowls."

Glenn Ramsden from Humberside Fire & Rescue Service added: "One instance of arson is one too many for the Fire & Rescue Service and we will do whatever we can to provide evidence to the police that will hopefully bring the perpetrator to justice.

"Fire can and does take life in minutes and we strongly recommend that if you are involved in attacks of this nature that you think long and hard about the possible consequences of your actions."

Source: gooletimesonline

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