Minority are spoiling Stonehaven skatepark

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a LOCAL man has blasted a group of visitors to Stonehaven for their anti-social behaviour, describing certain children who were staying at the Queen Elizabeth Caravan Park as “feral”.

The Stonehaven resident, who does not wish to be named, told the Leader that he was subjected to a barrage of abuse after approaching the youngsters to enquire about littering at the skate park.

He said: “I am a big supporter of the Skatepark, but I have a big concern that certain users are actively undermining the reputation of the vast majority of regular, repsonsible users, particularly in regard to their attitude to litter.”

The man had noticed that regular littering at the skatepark is becoming an eyesore, and the problem is being exacerbated by individuals kicking over the bins and spilling the contents. He had approached a group of youngsters aged between nine and 12 years old to make enquiries, but says he was met with a barrage of abuse.

He said: “I asked them if they knew what had happened and was greeted by a storm of abuse.

“I called the police and let them hear this abuse. These kids were staying in the caravan park, I followed them and I gave the police the details of the static van they were congregating around. I know from the warden that the police did go round later. He told me there were two vans causing trouble and another resident told me the noise had gone on till 10pm.

“The mess at the skatepark and also around the play park and on the car park - due to the “boy racers” - is disgusting and a slur on Stonehaven.

The resident said that regular, responsible users of the skatepark and other facilities should not allow anti-social behaviour such as littering to become a problem.

“The decent users of the skatepark, who are proud of their facility and ‘fraternity’, need to take responsibility for this behaviour, by reporting it to their committee and the police and working out a way of stopping the known ‘spoilers’ from using the skatepark.

“More people should, just once, challenge the users, especially these kids, and experience at first hand the depressing attitude of people who don’t accept their wider responsibilities, and worse, of these ‘feral’ kids who visit the town and bring their underclass alienation practices to bear by intimidating the decent users.”

Grampian Police have been informed of the incidents and have confirmed that they are looking in to it. Inspector Steve Golightly has said that plans are in place to monitor anti-social behaviour in the area and engage with skatepark users to discuss the impact that these issues have on the young people and how it reflects on the wider community.

Stonehaven and Lower Deeside Councillor Graeme Clark said that it should be noted that the majority of skatepark users are responsible. He said: “It’s a really nice area down there and the skatepark is great. Most of the users are super people, but there are always some who spoil it for the majority.

“Stonehaven hopes to gain another Beautiful Scotland award this year, and I am concerned that littering in areas like this will reflect badly on the town.

“If we can get some bins installed in the area that cannot be kicked over then that would go some way to solving this problem.”

A spokesman for Aberdeenshire Council said: “One of the conditions imposed on the skatepark is that those who run it have to keep it tidy.

“They bought a large 240 litre bin from landscape services, which is sited at the entrance and is emptied daily, seven days a week. They can purchase more bins from us, but it seems the greatest issue is that those using the site need to dispose of their waste appropriately.”