Diss Town Council urge an end to vandalism in town
Vandalism “must be stopped” following a worrying rise in incidents across Diss.
In the last three months, the newly opened ancient walkway at the back of Diss Youth and Community Centre has been vandalised, along with the boardwalk and gardens on Market Hill, the toilets and litter bin at Mere’s Mouth and play equipment in Diss Park.
The boardwalk and gardens, situated behind the town council offices, was opened in 2017, costing thousands of pounds in Heritage Lottery grant funding. Vandals have pulled several of the boards away from the wooden platforms, with burn marks and graffiti leaving other parts beyond repair.
In response, Diss Town Council has begun working in partnership with Norfolk Police and South Norfolk Council to launch a public information campaign, urging residents to report any incidents that they see.
At a meeting with representatives from Norfolk Police, district councillors and representatives from Diss High School, it was agreed that the rise in vandalism “was a social issue which needs involvement from everyone in the community”.
Graham Minshull, district councillor for Diss and Roydon, said: “Any form of vandalism or anti-social behaviour is totally unacceptable, and we must all work together to stop this sort of thing from happening.
“The damage is being caused by a very small minority, but their actions impact on all of us and must be stopped. I would ask anyone who has any information to report what they know through one of the many routes available.”
Norfolk Constabulary Sergeant James Butler stressed that offenders will only be caught if residents play their part in reporting incidents as and when they see them.
He said: “Diss Safer Neighbourhood Team is aware of the current concerns around anti-social behaviour and vandalism in the town centre.
“We are working closely with the town council and other partners, including those within the youth services team, to explore different ways of tackling the problem.
“We all have a part to play in making sure Diss remains a safe place to live, work and visit and I encourage the community to report any incidents of anti-social behaviour or crimes to us.
“It is really important that we understand what is happening in the area and we rely on reports from the community to know where to focus our attention.”
The town council has also made a substantial investment in improving CCTV coverage across the sites in the town, with cameras installed at the sports ground and youth centre in Shelfanger Road, with plans in place to introduce more at Diss Park and additional locations.
An online reporting tool is available by clicking here, where residents can report incidents anonymously.