Police in Pontefract have stepped up patrols after an increase in crime and anti-social behaviour in the town’s park.
Officers from Pontefract and Knottingley neighbourhood policing team (NPT) have launched a three-month operation at the site following reports of anti-social behaviour, boy racers, littering and dog fouling.
The project will see an increase in the number of officers and PCSOs patrolling the site in a bid to clamp down on crime.
Sgt John Bird, of the NPT, said: “There has been a slight increase in calls but I think that coincides with the lighter nights and months.
“In response to that we have put together an operation in conjunction with the council, which will see us spending more time up there.”
The scheme will run until November and officers hope it will lead to more people visiting the park.
Sgt Bird added: “The physical presence is already starting to have an effect in deterring the boy racers.
“It used to be quite a big problem but working with the Friends of Pontefract Park group and the council it’s getting a lot better.
“The park is a great facility and it’s a case of us not wanting to go back to the dark, old days when we had a lot of trouble there.
“It’s a really nice place for families to go and we want to keep it that way.”
Jack Kershaw, chairman of the Friends of Pontefract Park, gave his backing to the scheme.
He said: “We will bend over backwards to support this scheme.
“The litter problem at the park is frustrating but it’s clearly not as bad as it has been. I have also got to applaud the council for the work they are doing.”
There are also four new picnic benches in the park thanks to a donation from Pontefract NEW College.