From the mouths of babes: This arsonist should be ashamed

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A message in chalk from a sad little girl will hopefully cause a heartless arsonist to feel remorse.

People in Neath Hill were horrified when their community picnic bench was reduced to ashes last week.

A resident had donated the wooden bench to replace a children’s roundabout, which was removed from the tiny play area by the council for safety reasons last year.

“We waited for them to replace the roundabout but they didn’t. So my neighbour put a nice bench in its place,” said 82-year-old Pauline Dempster.

The play area is opposite St Monica’s Catholic primary school, so is a popular venue for parents and children.

“They sit at the bench, have picnics and chat. Dog walkers also gather there. It’s become a real hub of the community,” said Pauline.

The arsonist struck overnight, and the next day the entire estate was upset.

One child decided to leave a message. She wrote in chalk: ‘ I am so sad that someone set fire to the bench” and drew a tearful face.

The Citizen asked MK Council if it could replace the roundabout and provide a new bench too.

The council said there was no money in the budget for such items.

Do you have a bench, preferably fire proof, that you could donate to the good people of Neath Hill? Contact us if you can help.