Vandals’ arson attack hits Sheffield farm

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An arson attack on a popular Sheffield animal farm has been described as ‘despicable mindless vandalism’.

Staff at Graves Park Animal Farm were shocked to discover a grisly scene of dead animals as well as a chicken pen still smouldering.

Seven chickens were found dead, several with broken necks, while others had been killed by foxes in the park after being set free.

Staff also found a blood-spattered jumper among the carnage.

Opening of the attraction was delayed on Saturday as police investigated.

Several chickens were also stolen in the attack.

The attack came after police received reports of a group of youths in the park on Friday night – but it is not yet known if the two are connected.

A council spokesman said staff were ‘shocked’ and found five sheds had been broken into.

David Hargate, Sheffield Council’s head of parks and public realm, said: “It is despicable that anyone could carry out such mindless vandalism and we will be co-operating with the police to find those responsible for this terrible criminal act.”

Sheffield dad Carl McKe-own, aged 28, who was visiting the attraction for the first time yesterday, said: “It’s disgusting. I can’t understand why anyone would to that. It’s the youth of today.

“It’s a shame because it’s a nice place for families to come and see the animals.”

Police are treating the incident as arson.

n Anyone with information is asked to call South Yorkshire Police on 101, quoting incident number 228 of Saturday, March 22.