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North Norwich allotments targeted by vandals

PUBLISHED: 12:00 31 October 2011

The charred spot where two sheds and a conservatory once stood at Elm Grove Lane Allotments.

The charred spot where two sheds and a conservatory once stood at Elm Grove Lane Allotments.

Joe Wilkes

The chairman of an allotments association in the north of Norwich has spoken of her devastation at repeated arson and vandal attacks.

The latest crime saw two sheds set alight on the allotments at the secluded site on Elm Grove Lane, off Angel Road.

Norwich City Council has installed a 7ft reinforced metal security gate at the site after firefighters had to slice through the old one with bolt croppers to get to where the fire was blazing.

The arson took place between 12.30am and 1.45am on Tuesday, October 18 – the latest in a number of attacks at the allotments.

Previously, a car part and petrol were thrown into the communal pond, killing all the fish, greenhouses have been destroyed and property stolen.

Sheds were also burned down six months ago and allotment plot holders have expressed fears over the safety of their property.

Joanna Smith, chair of the Elm Grove Lane Allotments Association, said: “It has been devastating. It has made us feel awful and feel there is no point.

“It is horrible that we are being targeted. The arson attacks are the worst thing; the type of person that does that is worrying.”

However, Mrs Smith was pleased with the support the plot holders have had.

“The council have been really good. Considering they haven’t got any money, and the funding cuts, to put in a new gate is amazing. We feel very supported by the authorities.”

A City Council spokesman said: “Hopefully this fence will stop people climbing over. We will keep monitoring the situation and will work on further measures if the situation does not improve.”

Anyone with information about the crimes should call PC Lee Wilson at Norfolk police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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