A RESIDENT is appealing for a playing field in North Shields to be made an alcohol-free zone in the hope of solving a problem with nuisance youths.
Alan Kelly has complained about youngsters hanging around and drinking at the field behind Tynemouth Swimming Pool and next to North Shields Rugby Club.
The 71-year-old said he is now concerned about other youngsters and dog walkers injuring themselves on the broken glass and rubbish which is often left on the grass.
He said: “I’ve seen smashed bottles which have been stuck back into the ground so the sharp edges and sticking out of the soil.
“It’s very dangerous. There are people using the field for dog walking.
“But it has become a meeting place for school holidays where youths organise drinking dens. There is always lots of litter.
“I just want to highlight the problem before it gets out of hand.
“They have pulled trees down and taken wheelie bins and set them on fire.
“When you walk up and down the place, it is a bit of a disgrace. It isn’t pleasant.”
Mr Kelly, who lives in the nearby Monkswood Estate, North Shields, with his wife Anne, 69, said he has seen up to 40 youths drinking at the field at one time, and during school holidays he said they can be there until 2am.
He has reported the anti-social behaviour to the police and was told officers would patrol the area.
Neighbourhood Sergeant Steve Nicholson said: “We’re aware of concerns of disorder on the playing fields and will continue to monitor the situation to ensure it does not escalate.
“Neighbourhood officers carry out regular patrols in the area, to engage with residents and young people and find out what it is that concerns them and what police can do to help.
“Often, what seems like anti-social behaviour to one person could seem harmless to another person, and young people often don’t realise the affect their behaviour is having on other people.
“We’ve been working closely with the local community to raise awareness of the affects of anti-social behaviour and create respect, understanding and tolerance between everyone.”
To report anti-social behaviour contact police on 101.