Vandals trash family park just for kicks

Vandals trashed a Morecambe park provoking police to crack down on yobs.

Tuesday, 11th April 2017, 3:28 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 6:47 pm
Picture by Julian Brown for the LEP 01/06/15

View of Happy Mount Park, Morecambe, pictured in the rain
Picture by Julian Brown for the LEP 01/06/15 View of Happy Mount Park, Morecambe, pictured in the rain

Windows at Happy Mount Park’s bowling pavilion were smashed and the park was also littered with a number of smashed alcohol bottles.

Police are trying to clamp down on youths hanging around in the park and the nearby area due to a number of reports of criminal damage and anti-social behaviour.

A spokesman for Morecambe Area Police said: “We have had some information that some parents have been dropping off their children at the rear of the park after it has closed.”

After Friday’s incident police placed a dispersal order, covering the park and the surrounding area. The order means that police can make people leave the area if they believe it is justified – if people refuse to leave or return after being removed they may be arrested.

Sgt Adie Knowles of Morecambe Police said: “Last weekend we stopped three individuals at Happy Mount Park and their details were taken. The mother of one of these individuals has already been issued with a community protection notice and this juvenile has breached the notice so we will be taking further action. There is an issue with a large group hanging round Bare and Torrisholme.

“It starts off with a warning then if they breach that they get a notice, then if that is breached, they can get a £100 fixed penalty. People can be arrested and brought before the courts if they continue to breach their notices. We have already handed out eight of these notices in the area. We have been working with Lancaster City Council’s anti-social behaviour officer to issue these notices.”

Mark Davies, Chief Officer (Environment) for the city council, said: “Happy Mount Park is a tremendous local asset we should all take pride in. Unfortunately a very small minority treat the park in a mindless way that then requires public funding to be spent on clearing up the damage.

“Recent damage, including smashed windows, damaged fence and benches, bins being tipped over and glass bottles strewn across the bowling green and other public areas, will not be tolerated. The council’s Anti-Social Behaviour Officer will be working with the police to prevent such behaviour in the future.

“We would urge anyone with information about those responsible for acts of vandalism to contact the police.”