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Police reopen youth club to prevent anti-social behaviour

Taunton town centre

Police in Taunton are helping to reopen a youth club following reports of anti-social behaviour in the town centre.

The idea is to give young people a safe space to socialise.

Officers say it follows conversations with youngsters who complain there's nothing for them to do in the evenings.

The first session, for those aged 14 to 17, will take place this Friday night at the All Stars Sports Bar and entry costs £1.

PCSO Jade Tingley, from the Taunton central policing team, said: "We know that the closure of youth clubs has had an impact on young people's lives. 

"Youth clubs offer young people a place to go, and having spoken with teenagers there’s a demand for somewhere to go, and for activities to do in the evenings and weekends outside of school. 

"Having structured activity is really important for young people, especially those who perhaps don't have it at home. 

"By relaunching the local youth club we'll be taking young people off the streets and giving them something to do. 

"We don't want young people getting into a cycle of committing crime as it's very hard to break the cycle and can dramatically impact their adult life.

"Police have received multiple reports of anti-social behaviour by groups of teenagers who stay in the town centre after finishing school, hanging around late into the evenings making the area feel unsafe for others. 

"Local businesses have been financially impacted due to the loss of customers and would like both police and partners to work together to resolve the situation." 

"Taunton Central Youth Club is hosting their first session on Friday 15 March at All Stars Sports Bar, 22 East Street between 7and 9pm. The club is open to teenagers aged between 14 and 17 years and entry is £1 per person. Food will provided as well as pool tables and a chill zone. 

"Avon and Somerset Police and partners, including Taunton Deane and West Somerset Council and local volunteers hope that with enough interest the youth club can be put on regularly and would like to encourage parents to let their children know about the first session on Friday." 

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