Police crackdown on off-road vehicles at Burgess Hill nature reserve

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Police have successfully issued seven warnings in a bid to tackle the riding of off-road vehicles on Bedelands Nature Reserve in Burgess Hill.

The warnings have been issued to individuals since the beginning of March this year, after concern was raised about the problem.

A working group was formed, including police, local residents, councillors, park rangers, The Friends of Burgess Hill Green Circle (FBHGC) and Mid-Sussex District Council (MSDC) Anti-Social Behaviour Team to tackle the issue.

PCSO Hannah Lane said: “As well as causing alarm and distress to members of the public and putting themselves and others in danger, off-road motorcycling is a prime example of anti-social and nuisance behaviour.

“Working jointly with other agencies means we can tackle the problem head on. The park rangers are actively patrolling the area, and the FBHGC are putting up advice notices encouraging people to report incidents, and they are also moving trees and other materials to make natural barriers to prevent riders gaining access to the nature reserve.”

Section 59 of the Police Reform Act enables police officers to issue a warning to any on or off road vehicle driver that causes a nuisance that last for a period of 12 months. If at any point during the 12-month period the driver is caught driving in a similar manner, the vehicle can be seized by the police and a penalty has to be paid to get it back.

If you witness the riding of off road motorbikes in Bedelands or any other area in Mid Sussex please call Sussex Police on 101. If you feel directly threatened by the actions of anyone riding off road you can also call 999.

You can also visit the Sussex Police website to find out details of your local Neighbourhood Police Team www.sussex.police.uk

You can also find out more about the MSDC Park Ranger and Anti-social Behaviour Service by visiting www.midsussex.gov.uk