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Arsonists set fire to Sankey Bridges clubhouse in burglary
8:00am Friday 31st August 2012 in News
A BUILDING used by a model airplane club in Sankey Bridges has been targeted in an arson attack.
Warrington Model Club, based next to the Gatewarth United Utilities site off Old Liverpool Road, was torched last Friday, August 17.
Police are investigating the incident as deliberate but it is not yet clear how the fire was started.
Jim Bright is a member of the club where airplane enthusiasts meet to compare and fly models.
He was called at 11.30pm after CSOs from Cheshire Police saw smoke pouring from the cabin.
“They broke in, found there was nothing inside and basically set fire to the place,” he said.
“It has completely ruined the centre and caused quite a lot of damage.”
The airplane club was started in 1937 and currently has 73 members.
They have met at the Sankey Bridges site at weekends for the past five years to fly model planes such as war birds and jets.
Some models are worth up to £5,000 according to Jim, who believes the people responsible for the arson wanted to steal the models.
But members take them home after meetings, and the clubhouse is left empty overnight.
It is the first time it has suffered a break-in, with around £2,000 worth of damage caused by the fire.
“They must have been convinced the models were inside because of the lengths they went to get in there – they pulled the gates off,” said Jim.
“We have a lot of older members and some new members but this takes the heart out of it for everybody.
“We have always had a good relationship with the community and have always tried to promote our club because a lot of youngsters want to take it up.
“It’s very disheartening this has happened.”
Anyone with information should call Cheshire Police on 101.