‘Heart and soul’ of community demolished

The police hut being demolished. Pic: Val Watkinson
The police hut being demolished. Pic: Val Watkinson
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An old police hut which was once the ‘heart and soul’ of the community has been demolished as a result of anti-social behaviour.

The building, located at the Triangle on Lincoln Road, was knocked down this month after drink and drug addicts turned it into an anti-social hotspot.

Cllr Charles Swift, who represents the North Ward for Peterborough City Council, used to own the building.

He said: “It was an old police box. It was built during the war for the constable on the beat in the area.

“I bought it for £5 about 40 years ago, and I owned it for about 30 years, and put a bit of an extension on it.

“It was used by elderly people in the area as somewhere to meet, play dominos, read the papers - we had newspapers donated by the local newsagent.

“It was the perfect location as it had power, water, a kitchen area and a toilet.

“It was the heart and soul of the area. We called it the Old Person’s Shelter, and it was part of the furniture here in New England.

“But it has been empty for the last four or five years.

“People started to sleep rough in the building, and used it to take drugs, and urinated against the walls.

“It really started to stink. We tried putting boards up to stop people getting in, but they still managed to.

“It is sad, but the whole area has gone downhill.”

Val Watkinson, from near-by St Paul’s Church said: “It has become a place for those who sit and drink or need somewhere to sleep and has been broken into numerous times.”