A PLAY space for young children has been damaged after a group of teenagers set fire to it.

A forest school was set up in woodland off The Hags in Hollins as an educational area for youngsters at nearby Hollins Grundy Primary School last year.

However, a group of about 15 teenagers started a fire at the site on Friday evening, causing damage to log seating in the forest school's story telling area.

Paul Snelson from Hollins Conservation Group, which set up the facility with the help of a £10,000 grant, described the youngsters' actions as "wanton vandalism".

He added: "It is unfair on the children, this is their area.

"A lot of time and energy has gone into applying for funding and setting this up.

"If, last week, any of your children came home smelling of smoke, start asking questions of where they were."

After starting the fire, the group of about 15 youngsters were chased by a dog walker.

Fire crews turned up shortly after and put out the fire.