Councillors told Dunmow car park has become ‘no-go area’ because of anti-social behaviour

Foakes Hall, Dunmow, where the committee meeting took place. Picture: SaffronPhoto

Foakes Hall, Dunmow, where the committee meeting took place. Picture: SaffronPhoto - Credit: Archant

Residents voiced their concerns about anti-social behaviour in the town at a meeting of Dunmow Town Council.

Complaints were mostly focussed on the behaviour of young people in the Co-op car park in the town centre, with one member of the public telling town councillors that the area had become a "no-go area".

Speaking at a downs and commons committee meeting at Foakes Hall on Thursday evening, a member of the public told councillors: "The Co-op car park is becoming a no-go area. A lot of older people won't to go down there at all now. [The youngsters] are drinking, they are swearing, shouting. They are leaving litter there."

She added that supermarket staff had been left to clear the rubbish discarded at the scene overnight.

"I was hoping maybe we could set up a community policing team of our own," she added, warning: "If we don't do something it's going to get out of hand. I moved from an area which was out of hand and now I am back to where I was."

Another member of the public gave examples to councillors of behaviour which her daughter, who lives near that area, had seen.

These examples, she said, included people setting light to trolleys in the car park, urinating in the alleyway, damaging the Christmas trees each year, throwing engine oil across the pathways and dumping dead fish in the pond. It was also pointed out that there was no CCTV in the area.

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A final speaker said there were similar issues in Mill Lane, with people consuming nitrous oxide [balloons filled with laughing gas], she claimed.

In response to the concerns raised, deputy town clerk Jackie Deane said the matters fell under the police's control. She also explained that a police community support officer visited Dunmow weekly and the council would feedback all of that information given at the meeting to the officer.

Councillors also discussed reports of anti-social behaviour at the doctor's pond during the meeting.

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