A Whitchurch mum has spoken of the panic she felt when she woke to find a suspected arson attack in her back garden.

The mum of two – who wished to remain anonymous – found an empty tent reduced to ash in the early hours of last Tuesday (March 19) morning with her partner in Rosemary Lane, Whitchurch.

It had, up until that night, housed a friend who had recently been made homeless and she believes the attack was deliberate, and admits a shiver down the spine when she thinks if her children and partner had been camping that night.

"We don't have a clue who would have done this – that's what is irritating my partner because we can't go to the police with a name," she said.

"But it's not just burning down a tent – it's my property that they have burned and that's not fair on me or my kids.

"My partner and my kids sometimes go camping in the garden and it could have been them – that's a scary aspect.

"My friend was staying with us because he's been made homeless.

"But he was at a friend's house, looking after them while they were ill, so it's lucky that he wasn't there. I live here with my partner and our two children, who are one and two.

"We were asleep but a lady from one of the other houses came and woke us up to tell us that the ten was on fire. Our first reaction was of panic, more than anything.

"It was pretty much out when we got down but for a few bits of the tent that was still burning.

"We've lived here two years and we've never had anything like this before. My friend is ok and he's now getting into sheltered housing and into rehab as well.

PC Nick Peacock, from West Mercia Police, said: "An investigation has been launched and officers have been carrying out local enquiries.

"If anyone witnessed the incident, found any discarded canisters near Rosemary Lane that could have had flammable contents or has any information, please call West Mercia Police on 101, quoting incident number 849s of March 19 2019."

Information can also be given to the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via their website.