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6th JUNE 1996


  THE FIRE… pictured at its height with flames leaping through the roof  

The aftermath



A COUPLE caring for their eight-month-old grandson claim they were lucky to escape with their lives following a suspected arson attack at an empty Cwmgors shop at the week-end.

Tony and Margaret Jones, of 44 Heol-y-Gors, suffered damage estimated at around £10,000 to the attic area of their property during the second fire at the former pet food shop “Hi-Appetite” within a month.

Four local youths have been arrested in connection with the blaze. They have been bailed pending further enquiries

The latest blaze follows a number of other suspicious fires in the area. Three weeks ago two cars were destroyed after two garages in Colbren Square, Gwaun Cae Gurwen were set alight. About the same time a fire was started in the youth club which meets at the local primary school.

Mr Tony Jones, who works as apart adviser in a Port Talbot Garage, told the South Wales Guardian: “If this had occurred late at night we would not be here now.”

He said three fire engines raced to the scene after he made a 999-call at 8.17pm on Friday night. (two from Ammanford and one from Pontardawe)

Mr Jones added: “At the time we had our eight-month-old grandson staying with us and my wife was frantic as she was worried about the baby. After two fires in the shop next door, my wife is so frightened that she is afraid to go out.”

He said youngsters frequently entered the shop which has been empty for about six years using it as a den.

Cllr Gwenda Thomas, who represents G-C-G on the Neath-Port Talbort County Borough Council, (now an AM in the Welsh Assembly) said there was fear in the community following the alarming incidents.

“Local people, especially those living next to empty shops are worried. They want the offenders caught and dealt with appropriately.”


















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