Anger as hotel garden becomes 'drink and drugs party zone'

Neighbours of the Premier Inn on Norwich Riverside are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the hotel grounds

Neighbours of the Premier Inn on Norwich Riverside are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the hotel grounds - Credit: Archant

Neighbours are furious with a riverside hotel for letting its gardens become a hotbed of "drug-related anti-social behaviour".

Residents living at Baltic Wharf, which backs onto the gardens connected to Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel on Prince of Wales Road, said they were fed up with the failure to take action.

A sign by the gardens as you approach from the walkway on Prince of Wales Road says they are private, and "for the use of hotel guests only".

The site is completely accessible despite being a private garden

The site is completely accessible despite being a private garden - Credit: Archant

But according to Christian Scales, 48, who has lived on the estate next door for 14 years, he never sees hotel guests there — just big groups of young adults setting bins on fire, taking drugs and ripping apart benches, sometimes until 3am on a weekend.

The hotel was given more than 24 hours to respond, but has yet to answer our questions.

Mr Scales said: "The gardens used to be immaculate, with all these lovely sculptures and water features. But then about two years ago they started becoming overgrown and the antisocial behaviour began.

"Now you see drugs paraphernalia, smashed glass and empty vodka bottles everywhere."

Gas cannisters in the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel grounds

Gas cannisters in the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel grounds - Credit: Archant

Drugs paraphernalia and litter in the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel grounds

Drugs paraphernalia and litter in the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel grounds - Credit: Archant

Most Read

Last July, part of the fence separating Baltic Wharf from the hotel was brought down by a tree, but still has not been fixed.

"The hotel put up orange barriers, but they were ripped down and thrown in the river," Mr Scales said. "There's open access for anyone and everyone, and people walk through our private estate to get there."

Until about three months ago, he said the shouting, drinking and drug taking was sporadic. Now, with the warmer weather, it's "practically every night".

One of two barriers blocking entrance to the hotel

One of two barriers blocking entrance to the hotel, which have now been thrown in the river - Credit: Archant

"It's become some sort of party zone", he said.

His neighbour Bob Carmichael, whose balcony overlooks the gardens, moved to the estate from Liverpool four years ago to retire.

"It's a disgrace", he said. "Every time I go into the hotel they fob me off and say it's a matter for police."

Another neighbour said: "Some of the residents have actually cleaned up all the mess on a few occasions and delivered it to hotel management to see if they'll do anything about it, but they never have."

She added: "At a time when Norwich is really relying on tourism, it's going to make such an awful impression on guests."

Neighbours say they are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the Riverside Premier Inn garden

Neighbours say they are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the grounds, which a sign suggests it the private property of the hotel - Credit: Archant

Neighbours say they are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the grounds

Neighbours say they are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the grounds of the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel, which a sign suggests it the private property of the hotel - Credit: Archant

Premier Inn Norwich Nelson grounds

Neighbours say they are fed up with antisocial behaviour in the grounds of the Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel, which a sign suggests it the private property of the hotel - Credit: Archant

Bins have been burnt down and benches destroyed in Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel gardens

Bins have been burnt down and benches destroyed in Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel gardens - Credit: Archant

Rubbish has been left everywhere in Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel gardens

Rubbish has been left everywhere in Premier Inn Norwich Nelson City Centre hotel gardens - Credit: Archant

Alcohol bottles left outside hotel room windows in the gardens

Alcohol bottles left outside hotel room windows in the gardens - Credit: Archant

Almost all of the benches have been destroyed in the gardens

Almost all of the benches have been destroyed in the gardens - Credit: Archant


Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter