In the last few months of 2021, Eden Shopping Centre and High Wycombe town centre experienced groups of youths gathering on Friday and Saturday evenings leading to pockets of disorder.
Over 54 incidents were recorded in a three month period. These incidents involved drunken behaviour, violence, criminal damage and nuisance and intimidation to users of the Eden Shopping Centre.
To combat this, Buckinghamshire Council, Action4Youth, the Street Wardens, Thames Valley Police and Eden Shopping Centre combined forces to reduce the incidents of anti-social behaviour (ASB) and disorder to zero for the last two months.
This successful outcome was achieved by an additional youth security worker being funded for 6 months by Buckinghamshire Council’s Community Safety team and targeted patrols being made by Thames Valley Police along with Street Wardens and youth workers from The Junction – a youth club operated by Action4Youth and originally part funded by High Wycombe Community Board.
Youths causing the problems were quickly identified from CCTV and an Action4Youth outreach youth worker offered them positive alternatives to hanging around and causing a nuisance. The alternatives included playing table tennis and participating in music amd lyric writing sessions amongst other activities, at The Junction youth club.
In the cases where the offer of support was refused, visits were made to their home address to make their parents aware. Appropriate measures were also put in place to support the young people and to help divert them from causing ASB in the future.
Steve Bowles, Cabinet Member for Communities at Buckinghamshire Council, said: ‘This is a great example of how Buckinghamshire Council, Action4Youth, Thames Valley Police and other partners work together to make our towns safer and help turn young people away from crime and disorder.
It’s also good to see that this particular partnership activity will be ongoing – helping to ensure that ASB issues do not return to the area.‘
*Source of article : Press release from Buckinghamshire Council.