Wednesday, 06 July 2022

Allotments bonfire warning

ALLOTMENT holders in Henley have been reminded of the bonfire safety guidelines.

It comes after a complaint about “acrid” smoke coming from the Watermans Allotments, off Reading Road, on the evening of January 21.

Customers at the Tesco supermarket on the other side of the road said the smoke was thick and even got inside the store.

Shopper Elaine Howe said: “The car park was thick with acrid toxic smoke from plastic being burnt on a bonfire at the Reading Road allotments.

“The smoke was inside the store too and staff said many people had complained.

“It’s a very serious issue as children play sports on the adjoining courts and their lungs are being exposed to this.”

Tony Robinson, site manager at the allotments, said he could not be certain that the smoke was coming from the allotments but he had written to all the plot holders to warn them which items can be burned on site.

He said: “It is a bit of a mystery really. The allotments are a fair distance from Tesco and I couldn’t be sure it was coming from them.

“Plot holders do burn items from time to time, such as bits of broken pallets or straw.

“I have spoken with the plot holder who lit a fire in the area. He assured me that he extinguished it when he left the site at 3pm and this was confirmed by another plot holder.

“I examined the area and there is no sign of plastic. I can only assume the fire reignited if the wind got up or somebody decided to burn rubbish after dark.

“We do have people come in and dump their rubbish because the gate isn’t always locked.”

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