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Police tackle ASB in Northumberland park

14 Aug 2015 12:00 PM

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Officers are stepping up patrols to deal with anti-social behaviour (ASB) in and around Plessey Woods in Northumberland.

Residents and visitors to the parkland have raised concerns about rowdy behaviour, people riding motorcycles and quad bikes, abusive language and general issues of ASB.

Bedlington Neighbourhood Inspector Trevor Oakley, said: "Plessey Woods is a lovely parkland for people to enjoy and we don't want the problem behaviour of a few people spoiling the enjoyment for the vast majority of visitors, which is why we want to nip the problem in the bud.

"We know anti-social behaviour causes concern to local people which can seriously affect their quality of life. We know youths and other people have been gathering in Plessey Woods in Bedlington and causing anti-social behaviour and disorder.

"We've had number of calls from people concerned about off-road motorbikes and quad bikes being ridden in the area over recent weeks. Their behaviour has been causing a disturbance to residents and visitors, who were also worried about their safety, and distress to dog walkers and horse riders who regularly use the area.

"As a result we've increased our neighbourhood patrols of in the area at the key times these incidents have been reported. Officers have also been out talking to residents about the problem and making enquiries to find out who has been responsible for the anti-social behaviour.

"We are working closely with our partner agencies to tackle this. Neighbourhood officers have carried out regular patrols in the area and spoken to those causing a nuisance, in addition measures have been put in place to deter any further disorder.

"I hope people are reassured by the action we're taking and would ask they continue to help us target offenders by providing us with information on those who ride motorbikes irresponsibly and illegally.

"I'd urge people to contact us with any concerns they have about this or any other issues in their area."

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird, said: "There is no place for anti-social behaviour in our communities and I welcome the work being carried out in Plessey Woods to address people's concerns. Here we have a great example of Northumbria Police working with partners to take action to tackle the small minority involved in causing anti-social behaviour and reduce its impact on the local neighbourhood. Residents must feel assured that their concerns are being addressed and I urge anyone with any information or concerns to contact their neighbourhood police team."

Councillor Liz Simpson, chair of the safer Northumberland Partnership, said: “Northumberland County Council is fully committed to working with Northumbria Police to tackle anti-social behaviour throughout the county. I would like to reassure all those who visit Plessey Woods that the council and the police are determined to keep the area safe.”

Police are reminding riders of motorbikes and quad bikes on public roads that they must have a valid licence and insurance or could face prosecution and that riders cannot use a motorbike on private land without the genuine permission of the landowner.

Officers will stop bikes causing a nuisance and issue a Section 59 warning to riders, telling them if they continue to drive anti-socially or dangerously and receive a second warning within 12 months their bike can be seized and may be crushed.

People can contact police on 101, extension 69191 or via the Northumbria Police website, www.northumbria.police.uk

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