Bonfire refusal shock

SHOCK has been expressed over the fire service’s refusal to put out an unofficial bonfire in Mayfield school grounds.

The incident took place on Sunday November 4 at the shared campus of St Luke’s and Mayfield Primary Schools.

According to Robert Hogg, secretary of Mayfield and Easthouses Community Council, a large group of youths gathered and lit a bonfire.

He said there were unconfirmed reports that a bench from the playground was also set alight.

He said he was told about the incident by the local community police officer. Despite the police calling on the fire service to put out the fire, they refused to attend, stating that responsible adults were in attendance.

Mr Hogg said he was baffled by what appeared to be a new policy on attending bonfires: “Even the police were shocked. They were told that as there was someone over 16 there then it was OK and they didn’t need to attend.

“The police didn’t know about this policy, and I certainly hadn’t heard about it. It’s a new one on me.

“It’s pretty shocking, especially given that it was the police who requested the fire brigade attend.”

Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service confirmed that they did not attend the bonfire as there were responsible adults in attendance.

They said they had, however, put out a bonfire at the same location the previous evening.