POTENTIAL plans to axe evening bus services due to teen yobs’ behaviour have been ditched thanks to increased police patrols.

Missile-throwing youngsters led some Stagecoach drivers to refuse to drive along Nancy Road, St Luke’s Road and Cemetery Road, in Grimethorpe, where it was claimed they were congregating and throwing bricks at passing vehicles.

The issue was adopted as the Royston-based police’s top priority for a six-week period to deter those responsible.

Increased foot patrols were scheduled in between 5pm and 8pm - the times when the majority of incidents took place - while officers conducted two ‘Trojan’ bus operations, where officers travelled on buses, during the period to attempt to record them in the act.
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Sgt David Baines said: “The Trojans went on the affected routes on two dates, January 26 and February 9, when officers’ patrols were in full flow.

“Both operations were quiet and nothing much was noted, but given the area’s issues it will remain a point of interest going forward to make sure nothing untoward happens.

“As far as statistics go, no more incidents have been reported with regards to youths throwing objects at passing vehicles.”

Cheryl Green, operations manager at Stagecoach, praised the Grimethorpe community for reporting incidents.

“They’re excellent as they have all pulled together and by working with us and the police, touch wood, everything appears to be back to normal.

“The services were in jeopardy and we considered removing buses from Grimethorpe because of how bad it was, but the six-week PACT priority has really improved matters.”

Matt Davies, managing director at Stagecoach, added: “We are working very closely with local police regarding the significant increase in antisocial behaviour in the Grimethorpe area in recent months which has seen individuals throwing missiles, causing damage to buses.

“The safety of our passengers and frontline staff will always be our number one priority and we are planning further partnership working with South Yorkshire Police, where PCSOs will travel on our buses in an effort to hopefully deter anyone from engaging in antisocial behaviour.

“We are pleased to report that the two Trojan bus operations resulted in no incidents.

“Our bus services are vital to many people in the local area for essential journeys. We understand how important it is to the local community that these are able to be maintained and we are very keen to do that.

“The issue covered several areas of Grimethorpe so any withdrawal of service would have been significant in terms of impact for all involved, so clearly we were very keen to avoid this.

“It is reassuring to us that the antisocial behaviour appears to have been reduced. Work with police will continue so that our customers are able to travel without concern.”