Police probe attacks on Severn Project at Keynsham and Whitchurch

steve gloverPolice are investigating attacks on the Severn Project’s market gardens in Keynsham and Whitchurch which caused thousands of pounds worth of damage.

The farms at Durley Lane, Keynsham, at Oatlands Avenue in Whitchurch and at the diesel depot site at Temple Meads, employ and train people from “socially-excluded groups”, such as those recovering from drug or alcohol abuse, or those with mental health or offending backgrounds.

Some time over the weekend, some of the polytunnels used to grow crops at the four-acre site at Durley Lane were slashed. A window of their van was smashed, and the tyres slashed. A nearby shed window was also smashed but nothing was stolen.

Windows were also damaged at the Oatlands Avenue site, near Asda.

And the project founder, Steve Glover, pictured above, said his girlfriend’s car windscreen was also smashed over the weekend when she was staying with him at his home in Hanham.

Mr Glover also claims there have been threats and intimidation before that have not been taken seriously by the police.

He said:  “It is important that people are aware of the negativity that surrounds an organisation like ours – when it is completely clear that we do absolutely no harm and in fact benefit the community. If anybody has any information about what happened, or how my girlfriend’s car got damaged on the same night, please contact me or the police.”

He said there had been “amazing support on Facebook and Twitter”, adding: “I hope that the person who did the damage is aware of this and realises that the world is actually a really good place.”

slashed tyresThe Severn Project sells its salad to many top restaurants, including River Cottage. Mr Glover said the vandalism would affect their winter planting plans.

PC Leigh Watts, at Keynsham police station, said: “At this stage, no evidence had been found to link the three crimes, but all three are being investigated.

“Crime scene investigators have been to the Keynsham site, and house-to-house inquiries have been carried out.”

Anyone with information should can contact PC Watts on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously, on 0800 555 111.