Time to get tough on anti-social behaviour

Broken bottles lying in the dugout area beside the football pitch at Ferris Park. Pic courtesy of PJ McFarland
Broken bottles lying in the dugout area beside the football pitch at Ferris Park. Pic courtesy of PJ McFarland

The police, council and Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) are stepping up efforts to tackle anti-social behaviour in Dromore.

Two meetings are scheduled to take place this week to discuss public concerns about ongoing problems at Dromore Town Park and Ferris Park.

Dromore Town Park. Pic by Google

Dromore Town Park. Pic by Google

The issue came to a head on January 28 when a large group of young people who’d gathered at Ferris Park to drink alcohol smashed dozens of bottles on and around the sports pitch, leaving the area covered in broken glass.

Responding to complaints about the ongoing anti-social behaviour at both parks, the PSNI and PCSP are inviting local residents to speak to them about their concerns, and play a part in putting a halt to the trouble.

Inspector Brian Mills of the Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “I am aware of the impact that ongoing anti-social behaviour can have on the local community.

“I recently met with Dromore Neighbourhood Watch representatives and local councillors concerned about anti-social behaviour in Dromore Town Park and Ferris Park. Police patrols have been increased in the area.

“A further police/community meeting about anti-social behaviour in the area is planned for Friday, February 10 at 10.30am. This will be at Dromore Community Centre. Any concerned members of the public are invited to attend.”

Inspector Mills continued: “The Policing and Community Safety Partnership are promoting Park Watch in the area. Regular users of the parks can join the Park Watch Scheme to liaise with the Policing and Community Safety Partnership to prevent anti-social behaviour in the area.

“The police will continue to carefully monitor the situation at Dromore Park and Ferris Park and will respond appropriately to any community concerns.

“I would appeal to parents to know where their children are on these dark evenings and to make sure that they know what they are doing when they are not in the house.

“I would also ask youths to think of the consequences if they are involved in such behaviour. If you are caught, you could end up with a criminal record which can affect travel, education and employment in your future life.

“Anyone who suffers anti-social behaviour in their area is asked to phone their local police station and report it as soon as possible on the non-emergency number 101.”

Concerned members of the public are also invited to attend a public meeting being organised by the PCSP.

“A community/police engagement meeting will take place in Dromore Bowling Pavilion on Wednesday, February 8 at 7.30pm. Local residents have been invited to come along and raise any concerns including issues of anti-social behaviour in Dromore Park and Ferris Park,” a council spokesman said.

“It is also anticipated that Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon PCSP will be establishing a programme with young people in the Dromore area to examine issues such as anti-social behaviour, however this is currently at the early planning stages.”