Young people make Pavilion Gardens ‘not safe’

The Pavilion Gardens Octagon and replacement marquee
The Pavilion Gardens Octagon and replacement marquee

Residents say they are losing faith in the police to keep Buxton’s Pavilion Gardens safe, just days after a new order was brought in to stop anti-social behaviour.

In March High Peak borough councillors voted to bring in a new Public Spaces Protection Order at the request of the police to tackle disorder at the popular tourist spot.

The new order, which was came into force on June 13 and will last for three years, prohibits the consumption of alcohol and the use of foul or abusive language, as well as smoking or riding bikes in enclosed spaces, and covers parts of the car park, bandstand and play areas.

Police given more powers to tackle anti-social behaviour

One resident who live nears the Gardens, but who did not wish to be named, said: “It’s not safe to walk through the park anymore and the police aren’t doing anything, I thought the plan was to make an example of these kids to stop others doing the same thing.

“Either kids of today can’t read or they just don’t care anymore.

“We live near a 90-year-old woman who is terrified of the gangs and that is no way to live.

“I have lost faith in the police - they are impotent and frightened and walking on egg shells around these young people.

“And I know they will say that if they move them on they will only cause trouble elsewhere, but they are causing trouble in the Gardens and it is having an adverse affect on the town. We have visitors coming to the town to watch a show, and people getting married have pictures in the Gardens, but with all the broken glass and litter it’s not creating a good impression.”

Enforcement of the order would in large be carried out by the police, and anyone in breach of the new powers could be liable for a fine.

Buxton police sergeant Dennis Murphy said: “I’m saddened to hear these remarks, and want people to come and talk to us if they have any issues.

“We are not treading on egg shells, but we had to wait to do things properly. We have had to wait for the council to pass the order legally and put up signage, which will then give us more power to tackle anti-social behaviour.

“I fully acknowledge the lack of provisions for young people are pitifully poor and we are not out to demonize young people, but we will not tolerate anti-social behaviour of any kind and those who breach the new laws can expect there will be consequences.

“We hope that it won’t come to that. We want to work with our young people and help them to make good choices and we want the Pavilion Gardens to be a safe place for everyone to enjoy.”