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Thursday, 25 December 2014

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Half-term activity clubs run by Cumbria police cut anti-social behaviour reports

Youth activity clubs run by Cumbria police to combat anti-social behaviour have seen incidents halve in the past three years.

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Children playing: Chief superintendent Steve Johnson

The force runs a series of activity sessions – from free football to bike-marking and BMXs – during school holidays to give pupils something to do and get them off the streets.

PCSOs are also mounting extra patrols around areas popular with youngsters, such as skate parks and car parks.

A force spokesman said anti-social behaviour reports typically peak during school holidays, with 539 during last February’s half-term, up on the 465 of 2012.

Overall, incidents have fallen from 11,196 reports of youth anti-social behaviour in 2010 to 5,515 last year, down just over 50 per cent.

Chief superintendent Steve Johnson said: “The stats underline why we are focusing on this issue during the week.

“We talk to young people on a regular basis in order to prevent anti-social behaviour and how to enjoy the half-term holidays in a safe and responsible way.

“We ask the community to be tolerant over the week as there will be more children around who will be playing in the area.

“We urge youngsters to be considerate of other people by playing sports in designated parks and by keeping the noise down at night if they are socialising in residential areas.”

He warned that if the youngsters “crossed the line” and caused damage or became a nuisance, police would intervene.

Schemes run by police include ‘Staysafe’, ‘It’s Your Choice’ and the ‘Friday Night Project’ which provides free youth activities on a Friday night across west Cumbria.

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