02 June 2010>
A Caerphilly county borough community has benefited from a project that aims to combat anti-social behaviour and disorder in the local area.
The Nelson Village Partnership, with support from Caerphilly County Borough Council's Community Regeneration team, recently gained funding to tackle an area of the village that in the past has experienced problems with anti-social behaviour and disorder.
The funding, which was secured through the Welsh Assembly Government's Community Cohesion fund and Gwent Criminal Justice Board's Community Cashback initiative, has been used on two separate projects, both of which it is hoped will have a positive effect in reducing anti-social behaviour in the area.
Firstly, an access vehicle barrier with 'crocodile teeth' has been installed at the entrance to the Wern Woodland Park car park to prevent vehicles entering the car park in the evenings.
This area has in the past experienced problems with young adults gathering in the evenings, and often creating a disturbance to residents by playing loud music, revving car engines and through alcohol use.
Also, to try and instil a sense of local ownership and community pride for the adjacent pavilion building, a local artist was commissioned to work alongside local people to create an impressive artwork design for the pavilion's exterior.
Young people, together with members of the Nelson Cavaliers Football Club were involved in the project, and created poems and a rap song about Nelson, which formed the basis of the artwork design.
The pavilion has also suffered vandalism in the past, with roof tiles being smashed, guttering, lights and doors damaged, and graffiti written on the pavilion walls.
Cabinet member for the environment, Cllr Lyn Ackerman said, "Both the Community Cashback and Community Cohesion initiatives are excellent in that they really do help benefit worthwhile community projects, while at the same time helping to reduce levels of anti-social behaviour and youth annoyance in our communities.
"I am delighted that the local Nelson community has been able to benefit from receiving some of the seized ill-gotten gains of criminals for such a worthwhile project".
It is hoped that these excellent improvements to the village will also be beneficial in helping Caerphilly County Borough Council and the Nelson Village Partnership to achieve Green Flag status for the Wern Woodland Park – something both are striving hard to accomplish.
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