Pool partnership for safe hols

DO you know where your children are playing?That is the simple message police are today asking parents in Ipswich.The warning comes as the six-week summer holiday approaches and children are increasingly likely to hang out in places which are potentially dangerous.

By Georgina James

DO you know where your children are playing?

That is the simple question police are today asking parents in Ipswich.

The warning comes as the six-week summer holiday approaches and children are increasingly likely to spend time in places which are potentially dangerous.


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One of the main areas being targeted by police is Broomhill swimming baths, where kids are inclined to sneak in and have a dip after hours.

Over previous years the pool has attracted problems after closing time, but police are taking a tough stance this year and say trespassing will not be tolerated.

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Throughout the summer officers will be doing spot checks on the baths and will also be staking out the site in an attempt to catch anybody using the pool.

Pc Ian Rowland, community police officer for Broomhill, said: "Youngsters are our main target, especially children between the ages of eight and 12.

"First and foremost playing near water without supervision is extremely dangerous and our major concern is for their safety.

"After hours it is extremely dangerous. There is no lifeguard on duty and if an accident happened then there would be no trained person to help.

"As beat officer for the area I will be paying regular attention to the baths throughout the summer and will be doing spot checks in the evening."

Police have also been liasing with schools in the area in an attempt to hit home the dangers of playing near water and are hoping that parents too will make an extra effort to know where their kids are in the evenings.

"Schools are working with us in a bid to get the message across to the children," said Pc Rowland.

With the light evenings, Broomhill has had a number of break-ins in which food and drink has been stolen from the kiosk and which has seen the changing rooms vandalised.

In the last month there have been two attempted burglaries at Broomhill and police officers will be trying to catch the culprits by staking out the pool.

Colin Grogan, operations manager for Ipswich borough council, said: "We are working with the community police officer in a bid to make sure the facilities at Broomhill are a safe and enjoyable place for kids."

In the height of summer Broomhill can attract more than 600 visitors a day – if the sun comes out.

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