A boy aged about 14 was seen smashing a window at the Pyramid Centre in North Bretton as police warn of a rise in anti-social behaviour in the area from young adults and children.
Police have carried out what it describes as “numerous visits” to the centre recently and spoken to both shopkeepers and members of the public, as well as the youths themselves.
The centre has a long history of problems and as far back as 2002 an action group was formed to tackle vandalism and anti-social behaviour.
A dispersal order was also issued in the area in 2013 after 75 incidents of crime and anti-social behaviour, including nuisance and abusive youths, criminal damage, arson and hoax calls to emergency services, were reported to police over 12 months.
Bernard Champness, clerk of Bretton Parish Council, which is located at the Pyramid Centre, said: “The problem is there’s a group of youths that turn up around about midday and tend to hang around until the evening.
“They will play football and if the ball goes on the roof they will climb on it. The elderly people that live in Hanover Court, they see the children and are not inclined to come out.
“It’s the perception.”
Mr Champness added that the parish council has signed a contract with the police which would pay for a more visible presence in Bretton through overtime payments, and that more needs to be done with young people to relieve their boredom.
Denise Defraine, manager at Premier Late Shop, which is situated in the centre, said: “I live here and I do not feel intimidated by them. But customers do. They don’t mean any harm most of the time.
“They just loiter outside and play their music. They just need somewhere to go. The council should look at places for them to meet so they do not have to hang around here.
“They don’t give us grief and they’re as good as gold.”
Anti-social behaviour is said to have been aimed at two takeaways in the centre and police are looking for details on a young boy aged about 14 who was seen kicking a shop’s glass window on March 24.