Hereford & Worcester

Warndon Age Concern shop damaged by 'arson attack'

A charity shop in Worcestershire has been damaged in a suspected arson attack using a wheelie bin.

The fire started at Age Concern in Warndon at about 01:20 BST on Friday and caused structural damage to the shop and smoke damage to stock.

Police believe the fire started in a bin in the back yard and spread to the shop's kitchen and store room.

The force said there were families living above the shop. A teenager was arrested in connection with the fire.

The teenager has been released on bail and police investigations are ongoing.

Roger Merriman, retail development manager for Age Concern, Warndon, said: "You have to wonder why people do this sort of thing.

Befriending service affected

"It's very disappointing and not just in terms of the financial loss. The shop is in an urban area and it is part of the community."

Age Concern has two shops in Ambleside Drive, a specialist store for furniture and a general shop for clothes, bed linen, books and bric-a-brac.

Mr Merriman said it could take up to three weeks before the general store could re-open as the fire had affected the electrics, melted the window frames, and caused smoke damage to the stock, but the shop could still accept donated goods.

Funds from the store help to pay for local services in Worcestershire such as handymen services and a befriending service for trained volunteers to visit vulnerable older people at home.

Anyone with information about the fire is asked to contact West Mercia Police.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites