Fire destroys part of Alexandra Park in Poole
A KIDS play park was destroyed by an early morning fire, forcing the area to be cordoned off for families and young people.
Westbourne firefighters were dispatched to the Alexandra Park fire in Parkstone at around 2.30am on Sunday.
The crew used a hose reel jet to extinguish burning play equipment in Poole Council’s play park.
The police also intervened and helped keep people away from the area.
A dark and secure, crews pulled out shortly before 4 a.m. and reopened the park – while keeping the damaged playground closed.
The cause of the fire is currently unknown, but residents and community leaders have expressed concern that it may be suspicious.
The area has been marred by anti-social behavior in recent years, with Alexandra Park being one of the places to receive neighborhood police officers specifically tasked with patrolling as part of an effort dubbed Operation Nova last year.
Cllr Millie Earl, who lives near the park, told the Daily Echo: “It’s not particularly common for this kind of incident to happen, so to have something so dramatic happening is quite concerning.
“I have friends and residents who have children who use the park, so it’s not usable now, it’s a real loss for Parkstone.
“Play equipment and parks are so important to healthy activities, socializing and being outdoors, so taking that away from families is a shame.”
At the scene on Sunday afternoon, various walkers and families found the park in its burnt state. A couple, visiting the park with their two children, said they “didn’t hear anything” when the incident happened.
The father said: “It’s shameful because it means the children won’t be able to play here now. A bunch of kids come here after school and they won’t be able to do it now. Real shame.
“It is a very beautiful park as it is and if [the council] can restore it to how it was then, that would be great.
The park had already been refurbished in 2019, with new equipment offered to the youngest.
Dorset Police said no injuries were reported after the fire and no arrests were made.