AN arson attack on The Moor has renewed calls for CCTV to be installed.

Andrew Malloy, deputy chairman of Friends of the Moor, just happened to be passing by when he spotted the fire, at around 7.30pm on Wednesday.

Andrew said: “I was walking through the Moor to a Beer Festival committee meeting when I saw a glow from within the shelter.

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“Two bins were in the shelter and one had just been set on fire but no-one was around.

Knutsford Guardian: Wheelie bins well alight beneath a wooden shelterWheelie bins well alight beneath a wooden shelter (Image: Andrew Malloy)

“I managed to close the lid to try and reduce the flames which were starting to rise up but the lid soon burnt through.

“I called 999 and the fire service were there within a few minutes to extinguish the fire.”

Firefighters used a hose reel jet to put out the fire on Church Walk.

Andrew said: “It has been a while since we’ve had a fire on the Moor and it is sad to see it happen again.

“Whilst there is no obvious damage to the shelter, it is lucky I spotted it as I wasn’t originally going to walk that way.

 “We are calling for Cheshire East Council to install CCTV on the Moor.”

Knutsford Guardian: The gutted remains of the burnt out wheelie binThe gutted remains of the burnt out wheelie bin (Image: Andrew Malloy)

His sentiments were echoed by Knutsford Town Council.

Adam Keppel-Green, town clerk, said: “We have persistently been urging Cheshire East Council to install CCTV on the Moor to improve public safety and protect public assets.

“If it wasn’t for Andrew walking past at the right time, the shelter could have been lost and there would have been a major fire.

“If there had been CCTV this would have been caught swiftly.”

A Cheshire East Council spokesman said: “We deplore this arson attack and are thankful it was not as serious as it might have been.

“The nearest CCTV camera is positioned in the nearby King Street car park and is for the purpose of security and community safety within the car park.

"We have had previous discussions with Knutsford Town Council, but we have not received a formal request for a camera that covers The Moor, to be installed, nor has Cheshire police made any request on the basis of need.

“Funding for a new camera would have to be agreed with Knutsford Town Council as funding contributions for CCTV cameras in the borough are shared with town and parish councils.”