'Square is a no-go area'

PUBLISHED: 15:55 23 August 2006 | UPDATED: 09:45 24 May 2010

VANDALS are turning a shopping area in the centre of Clevedon into a no go area - congregating there at night and going on the rampage. In the past few weeks, yobbos have climbed up on to the canopy over the shop fronts at Queens Square and damaged 18 of

VANDALS are turning a shopping area in the centre of Clevedon into a no go area - congregating there at night and going on the rampage.In the past few weeks, yobbos have climbed up on to the canopy over the shop fronts at Queens Square and damaged 18 of the glass panels.They have also bent and damaged special spikes put on the canopy to keep pigeons from nesting there.Earlier this year the fish pond in the square was also badly vandalised when hooligans poured detergent into the water, leaving scores of fish dead.Benches in the square have also been ripped from their footings and damaged.Bosses at Debenham Tie Leung (DTZ), which manage Queens Square, are now calling for an increase in police patrols and better CCTV managing of the area in a bid to thwart further attacks.A spokesman for DTZ said: "The youngsters have been climbing up on each other's shoulders and running along the canopy."They have also been spotted playing football on the roof of the office."We have put anti-climb paint on the canopy but this does not seem to stop them from climbing up on there."We have received calls from elderly people who say they won't go down there at night because they find the gangs of youths intimidating."DTZ bosses have now written to Clevedon Town Council highlighting the problems and asking for increased security at the shopping area.The spokesman added: "There is a CCTV camera down there and we would like to see better monitoring of the area."We would also like to see increased police patrols in Queens Square."The damage has run into hundreds of pounds and each time we repair something, the cost falls on the tenants of the shops."Clevedon Town Council planning and environment committee chairman John Norton-Sealey said he was aware of the problems and agreed better policing and monitoring was needed of Queens Square.Councillor Norton-Sealey said: "Queens Square should be an area that everyone can enjoy."We need increased police patrols and better monitoring of the CCTV cameras in the area."Clevedon police spokesman, beat officer PC Phil Kinsella said: "We are making inquiries from the CCTV footage."We also make regular foot patrols of Queens Square and are responding to all calls and reports of antisocial behaviour."Police said they had also confiscated alcohol from youngsters drinking in Queens Square.

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