New fire at former RAF Upwood site makes it 11 arson attacks at the base during lockdown

A previous blaze this year at the former RAF Upwood site

A previous blaze this year at the former RAF Upwood site PICTURE: Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue - Credit: Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue

Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service are sure that this will not be the last arson attack.

A fire at the former RAF Upwood site on Tuesday makes the total 11 since the coronavirus lockdown in March.

The latest blaze took place on Tuesday, June 23 at 10:21pm. Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to deal with a fire of mixed rubbish which was well alight and they are treating the incident as arson.

It comes as police say they are continuing to receive reports of people breaking onto the site committing anti-social behaviour, putting themselves “in danger”.

“We are urging you to speak to your children, friends and family about the risks of trespassing onto the old base,” a police spokesperson said.


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Last month, The Hunts Post worked with Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service to reveal a pattern of offences going back several years. Data shows that fires at the former air base mostly seem to have occurred in April or May of this year and last year.

In 2020, there have been fires on May 17 at 18.09; May 16 at 21.53; May 5 at 18.46; April 28 at 19.36; April 18 at 19.15 and April 17 at 18.52.

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In 2019 there were fires on the following dates: April 6 at 20.24; April 11 at 20.03; April 17 at 22.00; April 18 at 13.52; April 22 at 18.19; May 7 at 16.58; May 23 at 0.58.

Even more disturbing is the fact that two fires that were started on April 17 and April 18 2019 and then again on April 17 and April 18 of this year.

Station commander Pete Jones, said: “The problem is we don’t know who owns that site, as it is a big piece of land, so several parts of the land will be owned by various owners.

“I don’t think this is going to be last incident we will have to deal with at the site.

“In regards to the fires happening in April and May, this is a peak time when the clocks go forward, so the days are longer and the weather is better.

“This then might attract these individuals to light fires at the Upwood site, which then results in huge blazes that we then have to extinguish.

“It is really hard to detect who these people are who start these fires as there is no CCTV cameras on this site.

“It is up to the landowner to provide these CCTV cameras.

“Our message is simple to these arsonists, don’t do it causes unnecessary amounts of our time, putting out these fires when we could be attending other incidents where people really need our help.”

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