A GROUP of youths has caused more than £2,000 worth of damage after setting a bonfire in children's play park in Bridgwater.

The yobs built the bonfire from an old pallet and burned a piece of play equipment as well leaving a large patch of scorched land.

One concerned local resident managed to capture some images on CCTV of the youths starting the fire at around 5am on Sunday, August 5 in the play park between Union Street and Bristol Road.

"It was really quite upsetting and so close to home," the resident, who opted to remain anonymous, said.

"It is very upsetting as my kids love playing in that park but unfortunately since the council refurbished the park there seems to be a gang of teens gathering there, constantly smoking, drinking, shouting and generally intimidating the smaller kids.

"It is obviously not all the youngsters around here, but a small minority who are ruining it for the rest."

The youths built the bonfire from an old pallet among other items of rubbish and scorched the springer/rocking horse piece of equipment and its surrounding safe play area.

A spokesman for Sedgemoor District Council said: "The damage equates to £2,200 and an order was placed yesterday for the repairs to be carried out hopefully by the end of the month.

"In the interim, the area has been fenced off for safety reasons.

"The police have some leads and we have been helping them identify the culprits."

Avon and Somerset Police are appealing to anyone with information regarding the incident to get in touch.

"We are investigating damage to a play area off Bristol Road in Bridgwater, which happened on August 5 at about 4.45am.

"Anyone with information should contact us quoting reference 5218/175414"