A picnic table was set on fire in a park in Inverness yesterday morning close to a pile of leaves which appeared to have been placed on top of broken glass.
The “evil” act of vandalism took place near a shelter at Inshes Park early yesterday morning.
Local resident and dog walker Ally Christie said he was walking through the park at about 6.30am when he came across the scene.
Mr Christie, who works for Historic Environment Scotland, added: “When I arrived, police were going up Inshes Road with their sirens on. I walked off through the park and two young lads were walking briskly away from the area.
“I went round the corner and looked and there were flames and smoke. Then the fire brigade came.
“I saw the glass. It looked like something has been pulled up to try and hide it. There was grass and leaves and branches on top of it.”
He added that he has “frequently” seen broken glass on a path at the park.
Inverness South councillor Ken Gowans said the ward discretionary budget has already been tapped to pay for new CCTV and lighting at the park, and he has been assured this will be in place by the end of this month.
Mr Gowans added: “The shelter is one of the focal points of the park and is well used.
“What concerns me most is that some misguided people would be evil enough to place glass in a position where they think someone might harm themselves. It’s a very sinister thing to do.”
Fellow ward councillor Duncan Macpherson said: “It’s a worrying situation for families and people in neighbouring houses. It spoils it for everyone. I think it’s a small handful of mindless vandals who are responsible.
“It’s sad that it has to come to that (installing lights and CCTV), and I would encourage anyone with information to contact police on 101.”
A fire service spokeswoman said that crews attended the fire yesterday morning, and that it was already out before they were needed.