‘Noise is so loud it sounds like they are upstairs in my house’

Walnut Tree skate park
Walnut Tree skate park

POLICE have stepped up patrols around a new skate park after residents complained their lives are being ruined by noise and intimidating behaviour.

Heronsbrook skate park in Walnut Tree opened last month, just metres from some homes, with a half pipe for skateboarders and a play area for toddlers.

But residents say their lives are now being made a misery by constant noise from 8am until midnight every day.

They also claim there has been a steady rise in teenagers from outside the area congregating at the park to take drugs and start fires.

A group of ten residents, who wished to remain anonymous through fear of reprisal attacks, say the park is too close to houses and needs to be moved or locked at night to stop the anti-social behaviour.

“The noise is so loud that it sounds like they are crashing around upstairs in my house,” said one mum.

“Children who use the park have been bullied off the equipment by older children.

“Even as an adult I feel intimidated when I take my children there and there are 15 teenagers hanging around.

“I’ve asked some of them to remove themselves from the equipment so that my child can play on it but all I got was a load of abuse.”

Another mum claimed a child was chased from the park by a group of older youths and had to be locked in the Spar shop for his own protection.

Parents have become so alarmed at the alleged anti-social behaviour they have started a campaign for action to be taken, including creating a Facebook group and e-petition.

Thames Valley Police Neighbourhood Inspector Colleen Lavery confirmed they have received several complaints and are dealing with the matter accordingly.

She said: “We have had a number of calls about excessive noise at the skate park.

“We have stepped up patrols in the area and have attended the skate park every day over the weekend.

“We are working with the council, our neighbourhood management partner, to look at noise alleviation solutions at the park.”

But Celia Deane, chair of the Neighbourhood Action Group insisted the overall response to the new facilities has been positive, despite “a few problems.”

She said: “I’ve been to the park lots of times and spoken to the young children and teenagers there, they are really pleased with their new facility.

“The old play equipment was falling to pieces and now, thanks to the new equipment, we have kids playing outside instead of being cooped up inside in front of the TV.”

> This article was written by Mary Biswell, a student at University Centre Milton Keynes