New youth club launching to help combat anti-social behaviour

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New Milton youth club
New Milton Town Council’s youth services manager Silma Ramsaywack has spearheaded the project

A NEW youth club is set to be launched soon, partly to help tackle anti-social behaviour.

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Aimed at youngsters aged 11 and upwards, it will be run on a four-week trial basis at New Milton Rugby Club’s base.

It starts on Wednesday 27th November, from 7pm to 9pm and, if successful, could run on a regular basis from Wednesday 5th February 2020.

New Milton Town Council’s youth services manager Silma Ramsaywack has spearheaded the project as efforts continue towards providing a new purpose-built youth facility in the town.

It comes after the Phoenix Centre in Culver Road was sold off by Hampshire County Council in 2017, having housed youth activities for 30 years.

Mrs Ramsaywack explained the intention was for the Ashley club to fill a gap until the purpose-built facility is available. It will be run by town council-employed qualified youth workers, assisted by volunteers.

“Recently and historically over the years, there has been some anti-social behaviour involving some of the young people gathering on the Ashley recreation ground,” Mrs Ramsaywack told the A&T.

“The four-week trial of a youth club on site, is a way of engaging and developing relationships with the young people, and together providing suitable activities for them to enjoy.”

As previously reported, there have been incidents of vandalism at the rugby club site, off Normans Way, with some of these attributed to youngsters.

Youths were seen on the roof of New Milton Rugby Club’s pavilion

These included thousands of pounds of damage caused when goal posts were bent and snapped on two occasions within months. Tiles were also ripped from the club pavilion’s roof after two youths were spotted on it.

In October, the town council reached an agreement with New Forest District Council for a CCTV camera to be installed on Ashley Recreation Ground within two months in a bid to crackdown on the disturbances.

Meanwhile, the town council is currently in negotiations with the landowner of a site near the centre of New Milton that could possibly accommodate a permanent youth centre.

For more information contact Mrs Ramsaywack by calling 01425 619120 or emailing silma.ramsaywack@newmiltontowncouncil.gov.uk.

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