Ramp vandals spoil bus shelter revamp
ARSONISTS ruined a village skateboard ramp only the day after the community had proudly spruced up its bus shelters.
The deliberate fire in a corner of the wooden ramp at Whitminster angered and upset parish council chairman John Jones.
Especially as it happened a little over 24 hours after Whitminster's north and southbound bus shelters had each been given a special wash and brush up, he said.
"They looked much tidier and smarter. Now we're quite upset and actually very frustrated that a few have ruined the skatepark for the many," said Mr Jones.
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"We are in the process of putting security fencing around it," he said yesterday.
The skateboarding ramp will now be out of bounds to all while the parish council contacts its insurers and arranges estimates and repairs.
Children from Quedgeley and Saul, even Cam and Dursley, regularly used the Whitminster ramp, Mr Jones said.
Firefighters were called to the ramp on Whitminster Playing Field at around 6pm on Wednesday.
"They put out the fire using one hose reel and were on scene for 40 minutes. It is suspected arson," said a Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman.
Police confirmed they would be launching an investigation.
It was on only Tuesday that half a dozen Neighbourhood Wardens from Stroud District Council clubbed together to smarten up the two bus shelters.
Organised by Whitminster's warden Phil Drew, the 20-year-old metal and plastic shelters were washed and scrubbed. Nearby weeds and vegetation were also pruned back.
Panels that had become opaque from the effects of the sun's rays might be replaced later only if funds allowed, said Mr Jones.