Community centre endures more than a year of anti-social behaviour

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Yobs have again vandalised a community centre which has been plagued by anti-social behaviour for more than a year.

Gangs of youths have been climbing on and damaging the roof at Havercroft and Ryhill Community Learning Centre on Mulberry Place in Ryhill.

People living nearby have been subjected to verbal abuse and the vandals damaged the centre’s drainage system, which caused it to flood.

In the latest incident on Saturday, October 10, youths smashed the windows of a shed used to store supplies.

The centre’s administrator Sheryl Saul said: “It has been an absolute nightmare over the last year or so.

“Neighbours living around the back of the centre keep reporting it but all they get is abuse from those doing it.

“The dark nights are coming so we fear it is only going to get worse.”

The centre runs a variety of community groups including computer, food hygiene and employment courses.

The IT suite and library have both been earmarked for refurbishment under a £1.2m investment scheme by Wakefield Council.

But courses at the centre have been disrupted after youths caused hundreds of pounds worth of damage.

Mrs Saul said: “It is disgraceful behaviour and it affects what we are trying do at the centre.

“The luncheon club, which is for isolated and lonely people, has been affected because we had to close an area off which was damaged.

“We want to welcome as many people as we can. We want people to use the centre and enjoy what we have got but the endless anti-social behaviour is stopping that from happening.”