Dramatic moment: Cardiff leisure area set alight by vandals, leaving residents ‘furious’

Dramatic moment: Cardiff leisure area set alight by vandals, leaving residents ‘furious’

Residents in a Cardiff suburb are “furious” after a children’s play area was set alight by vandals. Firefighters were sent to the blaze in the open area on Church Road in Caerau at around 10.40pm on Monday, July 1.

Photos shared on social media show huge flames engulfing the climbing structures as thick smoke billows into the sky just metres from people’s homes. It is the latest incident in a string of similar fires, according to a local resident who wished to remain anonymous.

The 55-year-old claims residents have to put up with deliberate fires “regularly” in the green space off the road, which includes the playground, surrounding countryside and woodland, near the Iron Age Caerau Fort and medieval St Mary’s Church. “It’s a nightmare – (it’s happened) four times in the last six days,” she said. “Children (have) been setting fires in the park and woodland.” For the latest Cardiff news, sign up to our newsletter here.

READ MORE: Cardiff Food and Drink Festival 2024: The full list of everything you can eat and buy

READ MORE: Cardiff’s new bus station has left people with mixed opinions

The moment the playground burned down exactly one year ago in July 2023

Other images show the moment the same play area was set alight by vandals almost exactly a year ago. Residents’ frustration is compounded by the fact the playground was installed as part of the development of facilities at Caerau Hillfort by the Caerau And Ely Rediscovering (CAER) Heritage Project, which has received funding from local organisations.

“(It’s) so annoying because the younger kids don’t have a park now,” the resident said. “It’s horrible because (the community) all worked so hard to get the park. I’ve only been here a year, but other residents are furious.”

Firefighters responding to a fire in the field surrounding the playground earlier this year

Another image shows a fire crew attending to a fire in the field surrounding the recreation area. “(This happened) about two months ago,” the resident added. “There’s a lot of rubbish dumped there now – surprisingly it hasn’t been set alight yet.” Get the best user experience with the WalesOnline Premium app on Apple or Android.

A South Wales Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: “SWFRS received a call at approximately 10.39pm on July 1 reporting a fire in an open area near Church Road, Caerau, Cardiff. A crew and piece of equipment from Ely Station attended and extinguished the fire using a hosepipe. The stop message was given at 10.50pm.”

Join the CardiffOnline WhatsApp community

(Image: Joe Daniel Price, Getty Images)

CardiffOnline has launched a new WhatsApp community to bring the latest news and top stories from Cardiff straight to your phone – and it’s completely free.

From court stories and traffic updates to breaking news and features, our new CardiffOnline Whatsapp community will be the quickest way to get the biggest stories across the capital.

Want to join? All you need to do is click this link, select “Join Community” and you’re all set. We won’t spam your feed with constant messages, but you will receive daily updates from us.

If for any reason you decide you no longer wish to be a part of our community, you can leave by clicking on your name at the top of your screen and clicking ‘Leave Group’. We occasionally present our community members with special offers, promotions and advertisements from us and our partners. You can read our Privacy Notice here.

Join our WhatsApp community here.