Councillors and police vow to tackle drug and anti-social behaviour concerns in Eye

Eye, Suffolk. Eye Community Centre. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE
Eye, Suffolk. Eye Community Centre. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Eye councillors and Suffolk Police have reassured residents they are trying to crack down on anti-social behaviour and drugs in the town.

A public meeting, organised independently of the town council, was held in the town hall on Monday night, attracting a large number of residents.

Eye, Suffolk. Paddock House on Wellington Street. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

Eye, Suffolk. Paddock House on Wellington Street. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

It followed concerns over anti-social behaviour, including loud vehicles, and drug taking in numerous spots in the town – including the community centre car park, The Pennings, Eye Airfield, the skate park, and Paddock House.

Eye town councillor and community centre trustee Kim Crispin said drugs, including cannabis, ketamine, crack and anti-depressants, were being taken around various points in Eye.

She said she had been met with abuse when trying to move some youngsters on – and her husband was even threatened with being stabbed.

“We have been told we are going to have our heads kicked in. We have been spat at. We have been told we are going to be run over,” she said.

We have been told we are going to have our heads kicked in. We have been spat at. We have been told we are going to be run over

Kim Crispin

“This is a serious matter. It is not going away and we seriously need to tackle this head on.”

District councillor Michael Burke said there had been evidence of drug dealing at The Pennings, as well as “mindless vandalism” and “appalling litter”.

He said drugs bags, spoons, razors and empty canisters had been found at The Pennings, with graffiti at Abbey Bridge and modified vehicles were racing through the town.

“Anti-social behaviour is putting this special place under threat and now is the time we need some urgent action,” he said.

Sergeant Mark Beresford, part of the local policing team for Eye, said public sector cuts had impacted on the police, with just one Pc and one PCSO covering Eye and a 450-square mile area.

He added that CCTV in the town could be an effective deterrent.

“We need intelligence. We do not need your name,” he told the meeting. “If you know who is racing around on these cars and bikes, if you know who these drug dealers and users are and where they are taking and dealing, phone up and remain anonymous.

“We have got limited police so this is why we are saying, to you as a community, help us.

“This should be a lovely, quiet town and I am sure we can restore that – but we need the intelligence and the names coming in.”

In a straw poll at the meeting, there were no objections to installing CCTV in the town.

While there was a call from Sgt Beresford for residents to provide information, many said they had tried – but complained of long waits and dead-ends when calling the 101 number – which also costs 15p per call.

Some of the youths who take their vehicles to The Pennings and Eye Airfield also came to the meeting.

One said they did not have anywhere to go and many of them were car enthusiasts – and they were not meeting up to irritate other residents.

They said if they were allocated a specific meeting point ,they would respect it.

Mayor of Eye Colin Ribchester said he was “over the moon” the young people had attended, and said they would need their input to find a solution.