Crowds of teenagers dispersed from Hove Lawns

Posted On 25 Jun 2020 at 10:33 am

Hove Lawns crowds by Agnese Ratniece

Huge crowds of teenagers were dispersed from Hove Lawns last night by police, leaving a trail of litter in their wake.

Police used a dispersal order to move on the youths who had gathered on the hottest day of the year.

The lawns have seen a spike of antisocial behaviour since lockdown was eased, along with other areas of the city such as St Ann’s Well Gardens and The Level.

Hove Lawns crowds by Agnese Ratniece

Ward councillor Chris Henry said more needed to be done to keep young people occupied while they were still out of school.

He said: “Three months of lockdown, no school, long summer ahead till school returns, no family holiday abroad and we live by the seaside. It’s inevitable that young people will gather for these reasons and it’s not necessarily wrong.

“But they need to be more respectful on the community and the neighbours.

“And as adults, we need to make them feel part of that community so they have a sense of belonging and not being alien. Then they’ll clear up litter.

“But the council have also put £130,000 into 32 city wide school holiday projects and we need to ensure this youth work is seen as valuable by council tax payers so that it can continue.”

“Police responded to reports of a large group of youths gathered on Hove Lawns around 6.37pm on Wednesday 24 June.

“Officers attended and a dispersal order was issued. The group left and police maintained a presence in the area late into the evening.

“No arrests were made.”

  1. Valerie Reply

    Chris Henry’s indulgent comments do not tally with my teen years experience.

    Holidays abroad were not an everyday expectation or a thing even. Teens had friendship groups they hung out with – but not as gangs or massing parties in public places. By 18 it was a thing to get fake ID to get into clubs to drink alcohol but we did not train up to become alcoholics or drug addicts. There wasn’t the money! Littering public places did not happen. Full Stop. Looking big by smoking did but hidden from parents. Teens were accountable to parents & not city councils or the police. Teens were in bed by 10. So were adults!

    Parents & prevailing cultural norms created the people who trashed the seafront & thought taking body wrecking drugs & vodka well into the small hours is what you do to look cool/be seen to be having fun. As adults it will morph into something worse.

    Decades of deranged music biz types/fashionable celebs created the template some of today’s cut & paste teens take as normal for fashioning their social credibility & its to be pitied.

    Reference points (money, fame, excess) and celebrity ‘role models’ dictate when its time to look past parental will for that route map into adult years – and that’s more about fashion than good intentions noisy from politicians.

    Their music is rough, & increasingly tortured & noisy with each new decade. Dressing & looking hungover or actually being out of it on something that once would have got you marginalised – is almost expected in some circles. Its a trap if embraced. Pity the teen that does.

    It will take more than councils intervening with well meaning initiatives the kids can see right through & ultimately avoid.

    The adult world needs to clean up its act and dial back the careless, excess-everything that Lockdown made us more conscious of needing to reduce. Because the kids see it and run with it.

  2. TOWYN Reply

    Is it becoming crystal clear to anyone yet that what we are looking at is the result of a certain generation’s parenting skills?

    Is this Generation X’s kids? Have you been relating all your fond memories to your kids with the good old days of illegal raves, drugs and acid house? Because that’s what it looks like to me…

  3. Sara Reply

    The amount of blatant drug taking was unreal. Weed and cocaine seemed to be flavour of the day. They just didn’t care they were in public view. The parents have a lot to say…

  4. Mr S Reply

    Presumably Chris Henry lives nowhere near the seafront. Possibly another planet maybe ?
    I’m grateful to be informed about the council tax money going towards those holiday projects because it clearly isn’t going towards the street cleaning of the narrow and oh so historic twitten I live in near the seafront.
    I had to thoroughly swill the urine and faeces away this morning. By far not for the first time. We rarely see the street cleaners our council tax is meant to pay for anymore and requests for an occasional but much needed pressure hose are largely ignored.
    However, yesterday evening was noticeably anarchic and aggressive. It has been increasingly like that since lockdown started being lifted. But this was more so.
    Today though I find out exactly why.
    Alienation and frustration. No holiday abroad.

    Voted Labour all my life but it was very difficult in the last election. Thankfully, Keir Starmer has finally brought some rationale and realism to replace the squabbling and posturing. But, while I am sure Mr Henry is a nice man and means well his asinine comments, that offer no solutions other than ‘understanding’, illustrate why some voters went so far as to do the unspeakable and vote for the execrable Johnson.

  5. Cheryl Reply

    Stank or weed as you walked past. Lots of kids seemed to be inhaling balloons no idea why. One girl was so drunk and group of young men were grouping her. We need Labour Party. They would chat to and help these youngsters

  6. Cathy Reply

    Nothing to do? Bored an alienated? How about getting them to clear up a) their mess and b) everyone else’s mess on the Lawns and beach? That would give them a good project for their summer off. Create a scheme where they can do something useful. Would/could our council do that? simple answer – no.

  7. Ellen Reply

    I feel sorry for these children and those that vented anger in Brixton last night. The government should be funding mindfulness classes for them. Also if labour had got in and had our free WiFi in they would not be bored as they could have watched programmes on their mobile phones

    • TOWYN Reply

      Sorry… what? How do you think they knew where to gather and when to gather? It wasn’t through telepathy or the mainstream media… it was through social media via the internet which is streamed through a mobile phone, tablet or computer of which a person pays a designated amount of money per month in order to use. Seeing as they are still at school and therefore not legally entitled to work with the exception of those who have turned 16, it’ll be their parents financing it. Free films are available to watch through a screen on any channel which offers such other than the BBC.

    • James Reply

      They attached the police and you feel sorry for them!!!!

  8. Simon Brilli Reply

    There throwing litter every where and taking drugs because they didnt get a foreign holiday this year.Really? Is that where we are at now.
    Not wrong to gather? that comes from our councillor and we have to keep them engaged then they will clear there rubbish up,yes good luck with that.
    I’ll remember your interview on Sourh today when my council bill comes in.

  9. Narinda108 Reply

    It’s easy to blame parents but I’m generation X and have a studious teetotal 14yr old despite reminiscing about my misspent youth . Many of these kids will have been at least partly brought up by older grandparents in fact, apart from the fact that most of my generation are in fact utterly law abiding responsible and frankly dullards with it. Perhaps a lack of any future combined with a deeply frustrating present might be playing a part? Climate change, little hope of finding decent housing, reduced opportunity for work, higher education impaired by Covid, it’s not looking great for young uns, and anyway, the urge to party is hardly unusual or unhealthy in itself. Authorities are somewhat failed too eh. I’m seeing a right mess in many areas of society, too easy just to blame messy teens.

  10. catherine k Reply

    i was shocked seeing so many teenagers openly taking cocaine

  11. James Reply

    You people seem a bit mad. I know some of the kids that went to the lawns. No different that the adults that went there during the day time.

    You should be more concerned about the groups that attacked the police the other night in London when similarly asked to go home and put some of them in hospital.

  12. Sarah Reply

    I was concerned seeing so many teenagers taking drugs. Wasn’t just the whacky backy either. The hard stuff. Would be terrified if that had been my kids there. Seems the days of a can of lager and a Marlboro light have gone. Seems to be class As and third base these days

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