Fury as autis­tic boy’s play­house is torched

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - STU­ART GREER

AMUM has hit out at cal­lous yobs who burned her autis­tic son’s play­house to the ground.

El­liott Hough, five, who is un­able to speak be­cause of his con­di­tion, has been left dev­as­tated af­ter ar­son­ists struck in the gar­den of his home on Wen­lock Close, Mac­cles­field.

El­liott burst into tears when he learned some­one had set fire to the equip­ment in the early hours of Satur­day morn­ing.

His fam­ily had built the play­house af­ter he was di­ag­nosed with Global De­vel­op­men­tal De­lay – mean­ing he is be­hind other chil­dren of his age – to give him his own space to play in. The blaze also caused ir­repara­ble dam­age to many of his favourite out­door toys.

Po­lice have launched an ar­son probe af­ter the fire at the Ivy Bank Pri­mary School pupil’s home on Wen­lock Close, Mac­cles­field.

His fu­ri­ous mum Si­mone has slammed the yobs be­hind the at­tack.

The sin­gle mum of four said: “Who­ever has done this is an aw­ful, aw­ful per­son. El­liott has been dev­as­tated by the fire. He can’t un­der­stand why any­one would do some­thing like this. It’s very dif­fi­cult to know what to say to a lit­tle boy when some­thing so bad hap­pens.”

Si­mone was wo­ken at 2am by the fire which had en­gulfed the play­house in her front gar­den.

The two crews from Mac­cles­field fire sta­tion at­tended and put out a blaze.

Fire in­ves­ti­ga­tors now be­lieve the fire was started de­lib­er­ately.

She said: “El­liott is a lovely lit­tle boy and is happy. But he can­not speak and has Global De­vel­op­men­tal De­lay which means that he is be­hind other chil­dren his age. I built the play­house to give him his own space to play. He is al­ways in there and loves it.

“When I looked out the win­dow I couldn’t be­lieve what I was see­ing. At first we thought, be­cause of the light­ning, that was what had caused it. But now we have been told it was done on pur­pose. I’m so an­gry.

“No one else in the neigh­bour­hood was af­fected which makes me feel like we were tar­geted which is scary.”

Po­lice con­firmed that at 2.14am on Satur­day, July 4 they re­ceived re­ports of a fire out­side a house on Wen­lock Close in Mac­cles­field. A spokesman said: “Of­fi­cers ar­rived to find a wooden play­house alight at the front of the house. Col­leagues from Cheshire Fire & Res­cue were in at­ten­dance to ex­tin­guish the fire, which did not spread to the main prop­erty. The fire of­fi­cer be­lieves it to have been a ma­li­cious ig­ni­tion and po­lice are now in­ves­ti­gat­ing. Any­one who saw any­thing sus­pi­cious in the area around that time is urged to call po­lice on 101, quot­ing in­ci­dent 109 of 4 July 2015. Al­ter­na­tively you can call Crimestop­pers anony­mously on 0800 555111.”

Matt Rat­cliffe

●● El­liott Hough, pic­tured with his mum Si­mone, has been left heart­bro­ken af­ter fire­bugs de­stroyed his wooden gar­den play­house

●● The charred re­mains of El­liott’s play­house

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