More than 1,000 fires were started deliberately across Bolton and Bury since the start of last year, according to newly unearthed figures.

Figures obtained by The Bolton News under the Freedom of Information Act reveal that since January 2021 a total of 1,155 deliberate fires were recorded across both boroughs.

The fires range vary in magnitude, from arson attacks on homes, to bin and grass fires, with a particularly serious example coming earlier this week when a house on Pentland Terrace in Horwich was set alight.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service head of prevention Billy Fenwick said: “In Bolton and Bury we continue to work with partners to tackle antisocial behaviour to protect communities.

“Where possible we conduct prevention work to reassure the community following incidents of antisocial behaviour and work closely alongside Greater Manchester Police as well as the local authorities.”

The Bolton News:

A house was targeted in a suspected arson attack on Pentland Terrace, Horwich last Monday

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority figures for deliberate fires in Bolton and Bury go up to March 6 this year, meaning that the Horwich blaze is one of several yet to be added to the tally.

Another devastating case occurred in Radcliffe last year when a man set fire to his estranged partner’s home on Dean Street on August 10, with video footage of the scene showing the aftermath of the devestation. 

Ryan Lomax, 30 of Brookbottom Road, was jailed for the crime last month.

The Bolton News:

A house on Dean Street, Radcliffe was deliberately set ablaze last August

But the figures showed that the authority’s efforts to tackle anti-social behaviour was making some progress with the number of deliberate fires having fallen from 1,246 over 2020 to 1,044 over 2021.

As well as tackling arson, Mr Fenwick also stressed the importance of fire safety in preventing accidents, which can be just as devastating.

He said: “We also carry out prevention activities to ensure residents know how to keep themselves safe from fire in and around the home.

“Key tips include having a working smoke alarm on all levels of your home, taking care when cooking or smoking in the home and when using electrical items, as well as ensuring wheelie bins are in a safe and secure place when not in use.”