Devastation at arson attack at pavilion in Sheffield park

Bolehill Recreation Ground's pavilion was destroyed in an arson attack
Bolehill Recreation Ground's pavilion was destroyed in an arson attack

Councillors have spoken of their devastation at an arson attack which destroyed a pavilion in a Sheffield park.

Bolehill Recreation Ground’s pavilion in Crookes was found engulfed in flames in the early hours of Friday.

Councillors assessing the damage to a pavilion after an arson attack

Councillors assessing the damage to a pavilion after an arson attack

Firefighters spent two hours tackling the blaze and assessments are ow being carried out to determine whether the structure can be salvaged.

The Pavilion, near Northfield Avenue, suffered severe damage in the arson attack and it is feared it may need to be demolished on safety grounds.

Councillor Neale Gibson said he is 'devastated' at the arson attack.

“I am angry to see such a community asset so cruelly taken away. The pavilion was really well used by people from all over. I know that a lot of Walkley residents regularly went there and the pavilion was used daily by bowlers and croquet players in season.

“I have already been in close contact with officers at Sheffield City Council and an evaluation is underway as to whether the remains of the pavilion constitutes a dangerous structure, which would sadly mean the building would need to be demolished, or whether it can be renovated.

"We have to let the council and the insurers evaluate the situation, after which I will work with all user groups to ensure the best way forward."

Councillors Craig Gamble-Pugh and Anne Murphy have made a number of site visits to the pavilion in the aftermath of the blaze.

Coun Gamble-Pugh said: “It is just shocking. The pavilion is completely burnt out. It is not just the use of the building that has been lost, but it is the memories too. Much was destroyed in the fire, including trophies won by the bowling team, that can't be replaced.

“Anne and I will do everything we can to support local residents recover from this blow. After more details are known, it is essential that local residents are consulted and that together we decide what happens next. In the meantime we will be working hard to ensure that temporary accommodation is found for all of the groups who used and relied on the pavilion”.

Anyone with information on the arsonist responsible should call South Yorkshire Police on 101.