Published: 00:00, 28 March 2002
FENCES have been torn up and the contents of dog-fouling bins thrown at windows by young vandals who are making life a misery for villagers in Ditton, near Maidstone.
The parish council is appealing for help to put a stop to what it claims are groups of teenagers running riot in the New Road recreation ground at night, causing hundreds of pounds of damage to the play area and nearby houses.
Parish council clerk Sue Eveson is collating information on the youngsters to give to the police and is calling for residents to call the council or Maidstone and Malling Police with any information they have.
Mrs Eveson said: "It has been really bad near New Road recreation ground recently. Residents are having their fences ripped up and the contents of dog bins or bricks thrown at their windows.
"The problem is that people don't come forward. One resident heard a group of about 15 teenagers on Kiln Barn Lane - but 15 teenagers are too intimidating for one person to confront."
She added: "It is the residents who end up paying for the damages, through the council tax. The money we spend on repairs comes at the expense of other things in the village."
The police have assured residents that they are aware of the problem and its Rural Task Force has been assigned to keep an eye on the area.
Police spokeswoman Gianna Pollero said: "It is mainly the recreation ground and the Scout hut which is having problems. The community centre area has got much better recently and PC Dave Lismore the community police officer is working with them to make sure it keeps improving."
Anyone with information about the vandals should contact Ditton Parish Council on 01732 844749 or Maidstone and Malling Police on 01622 690055.