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Hazardous needles left in Norwich park undergrowth

PUBLISHED: 11:49 19 January 2011 | UPDATED: 17:39 19 January 2011

Hypodermic needle in the undergrowth next to the footpath that off Bevan Close, West Earlham.
Local resident Becky Waterfield is concerned that they have not been cleared up by Norwich City Council after repeatedly telling warning them of the danger they present to local children.

Hypodermic needle in the undergrowth next to the footpath that off Bevan Close, West Earlham. Local resident Becky Waterfield is concerned that they have not been cleared up by Norwich City Council after repeatedly telling warning them of the danger they present to local children.

Archant 2010

Children have been put at risk because council staff failed to clear up syringes in an Earlham park for more than three months, according to a Norwich woman.

Becky Waterfield says she reported discarded needles lying on open land near her home in Robson Road, Earlham, to Norfolk police.

She says children in Earlham could have stood on the potentially-dangerous needles which were left on the ground for months.

Ms Waterfield saw three needles in the park where she often walks with her niece and nephew and reported this to the police at the beginning of October last year.

They promised to refer the matter to the council’s environmental health team, but she says the needles are still there, despite the fact that she offered to show police exactly where they were.

“There were three initially and there is another down there now, there might be even more than that. They are exactly the same syringes that were there originally,” she said.

“I am angry. There are dogs and children down there that could stand on them. The local kids walk through that park to get to school. I just wish they had been cleared up.

“I said to the police ‘I don’t mind meeting you to show you where they are’ but no one ever got back to me. That was over two months ago.”

Norfolk police have confirmed that the complaint was received and that the message was passed on to Norwich City Council. The council are unable to confirm whether a team was sent to clean up the needles.

The fields, near Bevon Close, have been the site of anti-social behaviour in recent months and Ms Waterfield claims they have been neglected, despite the fact that children at the nearby Earlham Infant School and City Academy Norwich often use the field as a cut through.

“If they live in this area they will tend to cut through the park on their way to school. The place is a bit of a mess, there is quite a lot of rubbish down there and it has been there for a while.”

A spokesman for Norfolk police said: “We urge anyone who finds needles not to touch them for health reasons, please report it to either the police or council and it will be dealt with as soon as possible.”

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