EXTRA patrols have been put in place around Johnstone woods after yobs left “completely unacceptable” litter strewn across the area.

Police are now taking action in Bluebell Woods after officers came across a mass of cans, bottles and fire-making equipment following reports from concerned residents.

Worried dog-walkers have been highlighting the issue since the turn of the year, fearing they could end up with expensive vet bills due to the amount of dangerous glass left by youths. Now police have stepped in to try to stop the anti-social behaviour.

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Sergeant Barry McNaught, of Johnstone police office, said: “Our community officers are spending every evening this week at the woods to try and find out who is responsible.

“We are in contact with council wardens and have asked them if they can step up their patrols and we have been in touch with community councils as well.

The Gazette: Police found fire-making equipment dumped in the woodsPolice found fire-making equipment dumped in the woods

“It is completely unacceptable to leave such a mess in a public place. It’s dangerous for people that visit and for the wildlife. I am a dog-walker myself so I understand what people mean about the dangers of this mess.”

Officers are keen not only to patrol the woods, but to go into high schools and speak to teenagers about the dangers of leaving litter lying around.

Sgt McNaught added: “We are looking to engage with high schools and get into classes in a bid to try to prevent this from continuing.

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“It is not acceptable to leave litter – it’s criminal to a certain extent – and we need to educate kids. It has an impact on those who visit the woods and the wildlife.” 

The Gazette: Cllr John Hood Cllr John Hood

Councillor John Hood, who represents Johnstone South and Elderslie, which covers the woods, said he had reported the issue on a number of occasions.

The Labour man said: “It really is quite dangerous. I am a dog-walker and I have reported it a few times. A fortune has been spent on these woods and it’s a crying shame they are being treated this way.

“I’m pleased police are now stepping up patrols.”

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