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Police investigating after spate of arson attacks

PUBLISHED: 10:52 30 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:10 02 May 2019

Police are investigating after a spate of arson attacks in Swaffham Market Place. PHOTO: IAN BURT

Police are investigating after a spate of arson attacks in Swaffham Market Place. PHOTO: IAN BURT

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A string of arson attacks which took place over an hour and a half in Swaffham have prompted a police investigation.

Five different incidents of bins deliberately being set on fire in Market Place were recorded overnight on Monday April 29 and Tuesday April 30.

One crew from Swaffham was called out to the fires, with the first one taking place at 11.58pm and the last at 1.41am.

Police were also called out to assist the fire service.

Following CCTV inquiries, one male was arrested but was later released without charge.

The incidents are being treated as linked and police are continuing to investigate.

Breckland engagement officer PC Paula Gilluley said: “Our local Safer Neighbourhood Teams and our new Breckland Neighbourhood Policing Team take incidents such as this very seriously.

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“We continue to work in partnership with the town council and our partner agencies to bring a multi-faceted approach to tackling and not tolerating anti-social behaviour in the area.

Speaking about incidents of anti-social behavior in the town, mayor of Swaffham Colin Houghton said: “It has got slightly worse.

“We have had these little incidents from time to time but not a lot compared to some other market towns.

“There have been little incidents at the recreation ground. It's nothing like a crime wave but there have been these regrettable incidents.

“The town council has a good relationship with the local police with our SNAP meetings. We work together closely.”

In separate incidents, Swaffham Infant and Nursery School's outdoor learning space was vandalised for the third time last month.

Obscene images were also carved onto cars parked on a street in Swaffham in another separate incident of anti-social behaviour in March.

Residents reported seeing mess left behind by the fires in Market Place. However, Mr Houghton said that the town would be cleaned up following the incidents.

Anyone with any information or footage of the incidents should contact police on 101 quoting 36/28645/19.

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