A resident in an Armagh city estate has said that the area and its periphery are being plagued with “chronic” anti-social issues, with police having been called on multiple occasions.
They also say that the litter is “absolutely awful” in the area encompassing Emania Terrace, Windmill Avenue and Druids Villas, with anti-social behaviour resulting in damage to some residents’ homes and vehicles.
Connor, a resident in the area, told Armagh I that the anti-social behaviour in the area is “chronic and ongoing”.
He said: “The summer is particularly bad with young people using the estate as a short cut between the Callan Bridge and town.
“Teenagers and young people congregate at the tunnel and in the entry between Emania Terrace and Windmill Avenue, as well as between Druids Villas and Windmill Avenue.”
He added: “Recent years have seen grass fires being lit very close to our homes. Winter months see young people throwing fireworks randomly into gardens and at each other, with no control over their flight; houses and cars have been hit. I have had to call police on several occasions for young people kicking our door.”
Connor added that the Friary Road tunnel has not helped matters, being a “magnet” for drinkers and anti-social young people coming from neighbouring estates towards the city centre.
The tunnel had received a £24,000 facelift in 2016 that involved the removal of the steps at the Emania Terrace entry point and the installation of a new fenced area.
He says that the renovations were merely a “box-ticking exercise” and have done little to address the concerns.
Connor says that statutory agencies have “abdicated their responsibilities to this part of the town”, but that the aging population are powerless to do anything about it for fear of reprisals against their homes.
He added: “There’s been absolutely nothing done and there’s only so many times people can wash their hands of it.
“Anybody in any civilised society would expect the police to deal with the situation….how long are they going to ignore it before it becomes a serious, serious issue?”
Sergeant Duffin from the PSNI said: “We want to reassure anyone who has concerns regarding anti-social behaviour that we are committed to working with our partners in Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Council to keep people safe.
“We know that this issue can have a lasting impact on communities. Please report the behaviour, so we can take steps to stop it.
“If you have any concerns, call us on 101. You can also make a report online using the non-emergency reporting form via www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/ or via Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org/”
ABC Borough Council have not responded to a request for comment as of the time of publishing.
Read more: Armagh resident concerns as chained-off tunnel still magnet for litter and anti-social behaviour
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