Joyriders blight park

SECURITY levels at an Ipswich park are being questioned today after joyriders dumped a number of stolen cars in its grounds.In the last two weeks 18 cars have either been stolen or attempted to be stolen in the west of Ipswich, mainly from the Chantry estate.

SECURITY levels at an Ipswich park are being questioned today after joyriders dumped a number of stolen cars in its grounds.

In the last two weeks 18 cars have either been stolen or attempted to be stolen in the west of Ipswich, mainly from the Chantry estate.

Many have been taken to Chantry Park, in London Road, and driven around before being set alight.

Tyre marks can be seen in the grass of the park along with the remains of the fires.

Tim Dickings, of The Street, Washbrook, is one of those who has had his car stolen and taken to the park.

He said: “When police called to let me know they had found my car burnt out close to the cricket pavilion at Chantry Park I immediately went to go and see what had been done.

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“When I got there I saw where the joyriders had driven around the park as if it were a race track, recklessly churning up the grass, before finally crashing it into a tree with a metal guard around it.”

Jerry Turner, who walks his dog in the park every day, said: “Four big black patches have appeared in the park over the last fortnight.

“They are obviously having problems with joyriders and yet the park is not being locked up securely at night.

“I am concerned for the residents of the Sue Ryder Care home. It must be quite frightening to see that happening. I don't see why they can't put a barrier up.”

Jo Marshall, Sue Ryder Care centre manager, said: “We have been trying to look into the possibility of security cameras.

“It would be impractical for us to manage bollards or barriers because the staff and visitors need to get in and out at various times of the day and night.

“We are having problems with our plans though because the building is listed and we are not able to attach cameras to it.”

Police have said they are increasing patrols in the area and letters are being sent out to the owners of cars which seem likely to be stolen.

A 17-year-old man from Ipswich has been arrested and charged with attempted theft of a car in the area and appeared before South East Magistrates' Court on April 6.

Have you been affected by the joyriders? Write to Evening Star Letters, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk>

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