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Pleas to name Needham Market vandals

PUBLISHED: 17:00 13 May 2002 | UPDATED: 11:55 03 March 2010

PLEAS are being made for people to name and shame the youths who terrorise and vandalise a Suffolk village, time after time.

Smashed windows are a common sight around Needham Market and the private property of residents is often vandalised.

PLEAS are being made for people to name and shame the youths who terrorise and vandalise a Suffolk village, time after time.

Smashed windows are a common sight around Needham Market and the private property of residents is often vandalised.

Neighbourhood Watch chairman Jenny Staughier, said today: "It's got to stop but unless people phone us or the police to say what's happening we can do nothing about it.

"People need to start naming and shaming these people so we can bring a stop to the problems."

In the latest incident to happen in the village, a gang of youths woke up a neighbourhood with their rowdy behaviour before returning later to cause damage to a 76-year-old's garden.

Fred Page woke up on Saturday morning to find his gate ripped off its hinges, an ornamental swan smashed, the flowers planted in it gone and a light pulled off his wall.

Beer bottles, cans and shards of wood were left littered across the pavement and the front lawn of his home in The Causeway.

He had heard the group congregating outside his house at around midnight but did not hear the damage being done about three hours later.

Mr Page, who later called the mayor out to survey the damage, said: "I had a jumbled sleep. I heard something going on but couldn't put two and two together.

"I've never had things like this happen to me before. They've never come through my gate and come up my path."

The problems started at about 11.30pm on Friday when people in Mr Page's neighbourhood were woken by a big bang, believed to have come from High Street.

A group of about eight 17 to 26-year-olds then congregated outside Mr Page's home drinking, shouting, chasing each other around and throwing things.

Neighbour Brian Crascall called the police at about 12.10am and an officer arrived to disperse the crowd. They are believed to have moved on to the grounds of the nearby school.

He said: "The noise was horrendous. They were shouting abuse and hollering."

The group returned shortly before 3am and it is thought it was at this time that the damage was caused.

Mr Crascall said: "I don't think they were picking on him (Mr Page). It was just unlucky that was where they sat down.

"Things like this happen three or four nights a week and there's hardly a window in High Street that hasn't been broken over the last year.

"Eight windows were broken in the street in one night, last week they broke the window at the bakers and the glaziers and there was a broken wall in Barrett's Lane.

"And only a few weeks ago the police were called out to the school where they'd made quite a mess."

Cars have been damaged and Mr Page's neighbour, Peggy Sheldrake was also a victim of the vandalism recently when her garden gate was smashed. Mr Crascall said: "We just don't want this. There are a lot of old people round here who are frightened and won't get involved.

"I can't believe they're getting away with it."

Mr Page added: "We've all had enough."

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Anyone with information about the vandalism is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.


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