RESIDENTS say they are disappointed with the lack of police action after youths have been seen drinking alcohol and taking drugs near Leigh’s war memorial.
As gangs of teenagers hang around the town centre Garden of Remembrance, local residents who have logged complaints to the police feel not enough is being done to tackle the anti-social behaviour.
Officers have ordered individuals to leave the area, disposed of their alcohol and arrested and prosecuted one man for being drunk and disorderly.
But a concerned member of the public, who did not wish to be named, said; “I would like to express a total level of disgust at the lack of police interest around the blatant disrespectful use of this sacred memorial to our fallen heroes.
“There are signs all around the gardens stating it is a no alcohol zone but low life drug dealers and alcoholics take over these gardens on a daily basis drinking, fighting among themselves, taking drugs, shouting, swearing and abusing the public who dare to pass through.
“I have witnessed and reported this to the police on numerous occasions in the last month as have other residents to no avail. The trouble is they take one person away and leave the others and they just carry on.
“The police have the right to attend, search for drugs, pour alcohol away and arrest for numerous broken laws but I feel nothing is done and still this lowlife bring disrespect to the area. I am concerned as I have seen them try and sell drugs to youngsters who attend a club nearby,
“It is about time the gardens were policed correctly and given back to the respectful people of Leigh to enjoy and the names of our fallen heroes honoured properly.”
But Insp Simon Monks said: “There have been four calls since the beginning of August relating to rowdy behaviour at the cenotaph and Garden of Remembrance. The issue appears to emanate from a nearby residential premises within the town, where a number of residents gather locally to consume alcohol.
“Local staff have liaised with management of the premises and anyone who is found drinking alcohol at the cenotaph after receiving a warning from the hostel has their tenancy revoked. A number of these tenants have now had notice to quit the premises as a result.
“We continue to monitor this area during daily patrols in the town centre, and the local PCSOs also link in daily with CCTV and local shops via the Central Watch and Shop Watch communication systems.”