A young autistic man says he is ‘devastated beyond words’ after heartless yobs burned his allotment to ashes.
Luke Hector, aged 24, received a panicked call from his mother around 8pm on Monday to say his allotment, in Mosborough, was on fire.
After hurrying back to his ‘pride and joy’, Luke found that months of hard work – and £500 worth of tools – had gone up in smoke.
Luke, of Lowedges, said he took control of the allotment three months ago and had just got it fit for purpose when the arsonists struck.
He said: “I’m devastated beyond words. I still can’t believe it.
“The allotment was full of brambles and weeds when I took over, there were two rotten sheds and lots of rubbish.
“I have worked on it all day, every day, for months now and I’ve spent £500 on tools. Now it’s all gone. I’m gutted.
“I can’t even face going back to the allotment right now and I’m fearful that if I start working on it again, exactly the same thing will happen.”
Luke, who suffers with autism, suspects that the culprits used an accelerant to make the fire so destructive.
He said: “They must have put some petrol on the fire, as everything was burned so fast. It’s a horrible thing to do to someone, the allotment was my pride and joy.
“I’m not sure if I can start work on it again. I suffer with depression and anxiety, as well as autism, and this whole thing has not been good for that.”
South Yorkshire Police said they are investigating the incident.
A spokesman said: “Police are investigating a reported arson at an allotment in the Mosborough area of Sheffield.
“At around 8pm on Monday, July 25, it is reported that persons unknown set fire to an allotment off Elm Crescent, Mosborough, causing substantial damage.
“Nobody is believed to have been injured during the incident.”
n Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101.