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Newly-installed bin on River Bann in Portadown set on fire in latest anti-social incident

Portadown bin fire
Photo: River Bann Clean-up / Facebook

There have been calls for tougher police action in dealing with anti-social behaviour across the borough.

It comes just days after a newly-installed wheelie bin, placed outside Ground Cafe on the banks of the River Bann in Portadown, was set alight.

According to the River Bann Cleanup Facebook page – run by on Jon Medlow – the bin had been in situ for just three weeks.

“It was installed after a number of photos had been sent to the page showing cups and packaging stacked on top and around the previous smaller bin,” explained Jon.

“This issue with the bin had been going on for a number of weekends, with people stacking everything on top and around it, rather than using another bin or taking their litter with them.”

He added: “Personally, I wouldn’t have installed that type of bin due to the anti-social behaviour in that area and wondered how long it would take before the wheelie bin inside it was set on fire. The answer to that – around three weeks, with it being set on fire on Saturday night.

“It’s not the first one to be set on fire and I’m sure it won’t be the last. Why that person or persons felt the need to burn it out? Only they know. It only takes one or two to ruin things for everyone – whether that is anti-social behaviour or littering.”

Meanwhile, Upper Bann MP Carla Lockhart has met and spoken with PSNI Neighbourhood Policing teams in Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon District to discuss ongoing issues with anti-social behaviour.

A number of incidents have been highlighted to the MP by residents across Upper Bann in recent weeks.

Ms Lockhart explained: “The last twelve months has been difficult for everyone, and I know for our young people the frustration is growing at not getting to meet friends, socialise and enjoy themselves.

“It is only natural to want to do these things. It is why I am pushing the Executive to consider our young people and their needs when discussing the reopening of our economy and social and leisure activities.

“What we don’t want however is large groups of young people gathering and engaging in antisocial behaviour, whether that be on street drinking, petty vandalism or other unwanted activity.

“This only causes misery to local neighbourhoods and can lead young people into bother. With Covid restrictions still in place, we also need to be mindful of the rules in terms of household mixing to protect our own health and the health of loved ones.

“It was good to meet the Police and to highlight some of the areas most impacted upon by anti social behaviour. I have received assurances that the PSNI will be more visible in the areas to tackle this behaviour and that is welcome.

“I will continue to monitor the situation in these areas to ensure local communities are not disrupted.”

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