MP's pledge

PUBLISHED: 11:46 02 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:08 06 May 2010

Alistair Burt

Alistair Burt

AN MP is ready to lead a campaign to help beat boredom among teenagers in Biggleswade. Alistair Burt, MP for North East Bedfordshire, became concerned about the lack of facilities for young people after going on patrol with police in the town. Talking exc

AN MP is ready to lead a campaign to help beat boredom among teenagers in Biggleswade.

Alistair Burt, MP for North East Bedfordshire, became concerned about the lack of facilities for young people after going on patrol with police in the town.

Talking exclusively to The Comet after going on patrol in the town with Biggleswade police town centre manager Pc Ian Wilson, Mr Burt said he was alerted to the needs of young people by speaking to so many on the streets.

Many young people did not pull their punches telling the MP why they were on the streets after dark and what they need and could he help.

After the face-to-face meetings with the teenagers, Mr Burt said: "It was a very interesting evening and I am planning to do it again even later at night after the pubs have closed.

"I managed to get around to several areas of Biggleswade with Pc Wilson and managed to speak to many groups of young people and asking them why they were gathered together on the streets.

"The answer from all of them was the same - we want something to do and there is nothing to do in the town.

"I was very surprised but now I want to make sure something is done for young people to try and get them off the streets of Biggleswade.

"More leisure facilities would be a move in the right direction. Young people say they want to do things with their friends and I am sure the majority don't want to hang around the streets.

"Groups of youths are not always threatening but from those I spoke to it is clear that they knew what they wanted. They weren't behaving badly but without good facilities to get them off the streets they are just going to stay and gather on the streets at night.

"We must do more for them and with Biggleswade expanding over the next few years it is essential that we listen to them now otherwise this problem will continue through no fault of the town's young people.

"I shall keep a close eye on the situation and hopefully something positive can be done to do something for young people in the town."

Pc Wilson agreed with Mr Burt, saying: "Adults tend to tar all young people with the same brush if they see them hanging around on the streets. Not all of them are out to make trouble and if they had facilities where they could go then it would certainly go a long way to getting a lot of young people off the streets.

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