Warning to trespassers after 30 bales of hay set alight on Batford Farm

PUBLISHED: 06:03 05 August 2016 | UPDATED: 16:04 26 September 2016

Thirty bales of hale were on fire in Harpenden following a suspected arson attack - photo courtesy of @wheatofire21

Thirty bales of hale were on fire in Harpenden following a suspected arson attack - photo courtesy of @wheatofire21

@wheatofire21

Thirty bales of hay caught alight on Sunday (31) following a suspected arson attack.

Batford Farm on Common Lane in Harpenden was left with burnt remnants of the bales after the blaze was extinguished at about 9.45pm.

Local resident, Hillary Taylor, of Common Lane, said that the farm was left in a ‘mess’ following the incident, creating extra work for farmer Phil Holt during the busy harvest season.

It is currently not clear how the fire was started but the fire service believe it to be arson, and cigarette ends were found in the ashes.

Hillary expressed concern about the dangers of trespassing on farms.

She said: “It’s just so dangerous. Someone earlier that day had let the cows out onto the field because the gate was left open.

“What most people don’t realise is that female cows with their calves are very protective of them and could mow anyone over.”

She continued: “If you smoke just because you think you have put your cigarette out, it might not be fully out. It won’t take much for an ember to smoulder for a bit and catch alight, especially near hay bales.

“He (Phil) has got a huge mess to clear up now but some people could have been hurt.”

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