Den littered with evidence of drug use

Problems behind Ladyburn House, Hadston
Problems behind Ladyburn House, Hadston

Tucked away in the centre of a north Northumberland village, this is just one of the dens that youths have turned into a haunt to take drugs, drink alcohol and cause a nuisance, it has been claimed.

And the concerned resident who contacted the Gazette to complain about the problem fears it is just a matter of time before a youngster dies of substance or solvent abuse.

Our source, who did not want to be named, said louts gather on land directly behind Ladyburn House in Hadston as well as other sites. He says the dens are littered with drug paraphernalia, alcohol bottles and aerosol cans, and children as young as 10 are smoking at the site.

Elderly people are too frightened to leave the house at night, the resident claims.

He has called for action to be taken to tackle the problem, but says his pleas for a resolution have fallen on deaf ears.

He added that the site has previously been cleared of rubbish, but this is not enough.

“This problem has gone from bad to worse and is the talk of the village. There will be a death. It is a matter of time before a kid overdoses or dies from solvent abuse.

“There have been bottles thrown onto the lawn of Ladyburn House and some elderly people are scared at nighttime. “People have been threatened by youths congregating there.

“The local authority, councillors and Isos are ignorant of the situation and have not been assertive in addressing this serious problem. It needs someone to come in with a chainsaw, cut it down and then police it.”

County and parish councillor Scott Dickinson said that action is to be taken.

At Monday’s East Chevington Parish Council meeting, PC Paul Dent said that officers are carrying out extra patrols.

He said: “There has been concern about overgrown land at the back of the community centre in relation to drug usage. I have asked Isos to give us a definitive answer as to the ownership of the land.”

He added that the area was a problem a few years ago, but it was sorted out by keeping the area cut back.