South East Wales

Fire at former Llanwern Bowls Club pavilion started deliberately

A fire which destroyed a disused bowls club pavilion in Newport was started deliberately, investigators have said.

Firefighters were called to Llanwern Bowls Club's former site in Ringland Way on Monday shortly after 20:15 BST.

The club moved to a green in Beechwood in March after being plagued by vandals and problems with fly tipping.

Vice-chairman Don Barnes said the landowners felt they could no carry on replacing and repairing damaged gates and locks at the old club.

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service said the single story building was "well alight" when they arrived at the scene on Monday shortly after 20:15 BST. The blaze was extinguished just before 21:00 BST.

A fire service spokeswoman said on Tuesday that it was started deliberately.

Mr Barnes said: "I'm not surprised really. We have had problems with vandalism over the last few years, and fly tipping.

"People had dumped items on the site, including 600 or 700 tyres. The landowners, St Modwen, said they were no longer prepared to give us access to the site, so we moved to Beechwood in March."

Vandal attacks on the pavilion included shots fired from a pellet gun.

"We had a container in the old building that we were in the process of selling off," added Mr Barnes.

Llanwern Bowls Club is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, and has about 25 members.

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