Police say arson attack on Melton caravan site was a hate crime

Police officers have been carrying out investigations at the scene of the blaze which destroyed six caravans in a field off Sandy Lane in Melton
Police officers have been carrying out investigations at the scene of the blaze which destroyed six caravans in a field off Sandy Lane in Melton
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Police are treating a blaze which destroyed six caravans in a Melton field on Monday night as a hate crime.

Officers say the incident, at a campsite which has been occupied by travellers, was an act of arson.

The charred remains of the caravans following a fire in field off Sandy Lane in Melton

The charred remains of the caravans following a fire in field off Sandy Lane in Melton

Fire service investigators earlier said they believed it was started deliberately.

Two crews of firefighters from Melton and one from Oakham were deployed to the incident, on Sandy Lane, at 9.20pm and they spent five hours tackling the fire.

A Leicestershire Police spokeswoman said yesterday (Wednesday): “The incident at Sandy Lane is being treated as arson and it has been categorised as a hate crime.”

Police were alerted to the incident by the fire service at 9.34pm.

The charred remains of the caravans following a fire in field off Sandy Lane in Melton EMN-190319-141031001

The charred remains of the caravans following a fire in field off Sandy Lane in Melton EMN-190319-141031001

Melton fire station watch manager Simon Lee said no-one was on the site at the time and no other property was damaged.

He told the Melton Times: “When we arrived the site was well ablaze.

“There were six caravans which were destroyed by fire.

“We had an issue with no water at the site so we sent out for a big water carrier from the Loughborough fire station.”

Mr Lee said the caravan site appeared to be a permanent residential arrangement but that it appeared that it had not been occupied for a while.

A spokesman for Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service said yesterday: “Investigations are continuing but it is believed it was started deliberately.”

Anyone who saw anything in the area at the time of the blaze or who has information relating to it is asked to call 9719 Ian McGrath, of Leicestershire Police, on 101 quoting the reference number 19*138765.