Anti Social Behaviour in Hawkwell on 7,8,9 May

May 14, 2008 by  

Art Project“On Wednesday night/Thursday morning the kids were over there [Clements Hall] drinking and shouting abuse until 1.30 in the morning. The state of the park on the Thursday morning was disgusting, spirit and wine bottles and cans.
Last night, Friday, 9 May was worse, the kids were still over there shouting abuse, drinking, lighting a fires until 4.15 am.”

There were over 250 youths gathered. Youths had come from Rochford, Rayleigh and possibly Shoebury, to mix with Hockley / Hawkwell youths.
It is now a wider problem when Year 11 students get together and consume alcohol in large numbers. It has become an annual event with no signs that it will stop in the immediate future. Clements Hall is designated no alcohol and signs indicate that, but the youths ignore it.

As a District Councillor for Hawkwell I am insisting that the Police get together with all schools across Southend and Rochford to find a better way of managing the release of Year 11.

It is tempting for some schools, like Greensward does, to release their Year 11 early to so called “study leave”.  It clearly releases school resources.  But is it good for the students?  Not in my opinion because they lose the valuable focus, guidance and are I say discipline they need to tackle their examinations successfully. If the Police can influence Greensward and other schools in any way then perhaps the Police could question that wisdom and policy alongside the difficulties it places the community and the Police in from unwelcome anti social behaviour. 
Year 11, will be released anyway whether before or after examinations.  And I would expect the Police to liase with all Year 11 schools and work with them and the students to effect a better release and transition from school.

The early release of Year 11 to so called “study leave allows certain young people to conclude that if they get together again in numbers there is nothing that “WE” can do.
My call to the Police and schools is to work more effectively together to manage the situation so that it does not occur again in future.  All schools have a responsibility to Year 11 which seems to being ABDICATED, when they need the support of School even more in preparation in more than just knowledge for the GCSE Examinations.  Schools also have a duty to the Police AND our community to manage the situation otherwise relations between the School and the Community will deteriorate.  I have asked the Police to front this initiative because they will be listened to, HOPEFULLY.

Residents are now concerned about the coming summer as past events remind us that there are issues, from time to time and that outside of term time, we have, essentially,only the Police Service to look to for help.  I am sure that Steve and his colleagues will gather local intelligence and try to be one step ahead with prescence and resources.

The other alternative is to make the area surrounding Clements Hall an exclusion zone once again.  But Essex Police want the local young people to congregate there rather than elsewhere.  If Essex Police want this to continue to be supported by the community, including me, then it must be seen to be working…………not getting worse, hence my call not for more resources, which they do not have and will not get, but a wider more effective strategy based on community policing influencing the schools to get involved in a more effective and engaged way.

Essex Police will be reviewing the position and I have asked them to update me.



2 Responses to “Anti Social Behaviour in Hawkwell on 7,8,9 May”
  1. Editor says:

    Essex Police NewsLine
    Last chance saloon for under-age drinkers
    By Alan Jones

    Police in Rochford have launched a concerted crackdown on under-age drinking and nuisance behaviour in response to concerns raised by local residents.

    In one evening recently officers confiscated more than 60 cans of beer and lager and scores of bottles of spirits, wine and alcopops from youngsters in the vicinity of Clements Hall, Hawkwell.

    The strong police presence, which involved filming the seizures, ensured that unofficial celebrations to mark the end of the school year passed off without incident and without anyone being arrested.

    The intelligence-lead operation was part of an ongoing strategy to tackle under-age drinking and related incidents of anti-social behaviour.

    District Commander Chief Inspector Andy Prophet said: “Invariably under-age drinking leads to rowdy and nuisance behaviour so we have launched this initiative in response to the concerns of residents.”

    “In my experience most young people are decent and law abiding but some do not seem to realise the distress their behaviour causes to others and the impact their conduct can have on the wider community. If nothing is done such anti-social acts can lead to criminality. I want young people, and their parents, to be aware of these issues and, where appropriate, take the necessary steps.”

    As a result of the recent seizures more that 30 parents have received a letter from Chief Inspector Prophet explaining that their child was stopped in illegal possession of alcohol and warning of the consequences of any further offences.

    He said: “I am seeking the co-operation of parents in speaking to their children about their behaviour and am open to discussing ways in which we can work with them on this.

    “However, I have also made it quite clear that should their child be found with alcohol again they can expect a visit from one of my officers. They should regard this as a ‘Yellow Card’ or final warning. Any further occurrences from there will trigger a ‘Red Card’ and we will seek to place the young person concerned on an Acceptable Behaviour Contract.”

    Added Dan Carlin: Chairman of Rochford Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP): “The CDRP, of which the police are one of our key partners, are working hard to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. A key part of this work is of course ensuring appropriate standards of behaviour but it is also about educating our young people about the dangers of alcohol misuse and providing stimulating activities for them to get involved in.”

    PCSO Laura Merrell is pictured with some of the seized alcohol.

    July 8, 2008

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