'Certain pockets' to be targeted after fall in Hartlepool off-road bike complaints

Police chiefs have pledged to continue their crackdown on nuisance off-road bikers after reporting a recent fall in such incidents.

Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 4:49 pm
Updated Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 4:51 pm
Temporary Chief Inspector Mark Haworth, of Hartlepool Police, has promised that more off-road bikes will be seized in the coming months if problems persist in "pockets" across town.

"Certain pockets” across town where problems still persist will be targeted, a meeting of the Safer Hartlepool Partnership was told.

West View Road, the Headland and Belle Vue are among the areas where problems have been recently identified.

Temporary Chief Inspector Mark Haworth, from Cleveland Police, told the partnership that there has been an overall reduction in off-road vehicle incidents across the town in recent months.

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Signs have been placed at the entrance to Central Park.

Speaking at the latest meeting, he said: “Working with the Community Safety Team we’ve put some notices up on the Headland, some notices up in the Belle Vue area.

“We have had seizures of motorbikes. So there’s a strong message that’s started to go there. We do still have some pockets of it.

“You’ll find over the next forthcoming months, especially on the build up towards Christmas, those quads, if they are illegally driving or riding in Hartlepool, they will be seized and also the riders will be prosecuted.”

He gave an example of the Belle Vue area as one which has seen numerous off-road vehicles seized with warrants carried out in some cases.

Central Park, in West View Road, is one of the areas where problems have been reported.

Cllr Shane Moore, Hartlepool Borough Council’s leader, who represents the Headland and Harbour ward, told the meeting he was aware of the issues with off-road vehicles in his ward.

He added a number of residents in the community had supported the police by providing intelligence and urged them to continue doing so to help tackle the problem.

Safer Hartlepool Partnership performance figures for April to June 2021 noted Headland and Harbour was the ward with the highest number of police anti-social behaviour reports in the town – 185 - which equated to 17% of total incidents of this kind across the borough.

A report to the partnership noted 33 of these 185 incidents were linked to off-road vehicle nuisance.

Off-road motorcycles and quad bikes being ridden on the Central Park recreation ground, at the lower end of West View Road, accounted for 13 of these 33 complaints.

The report notes the breakdown is according to the previous 11 wards in place before the May council elections, after which the council was rearranged into 12 wards, with police data not yet aggregated for the new boundaries.

Earlier this year there was also a spate of complaints about dangerous quad bike riding in the town’s Summerhill Country Park and Outdoor Nature Reserve.

Anyone with any information about dangerous quad bike riding should contact the Cleveland Police on the non-emergency number 101.

In the event of an ongoing emergency, dial 999.

Alternatively people can speak to the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.