THREE police officers have been appointed to tackle antisocial behaviour by young people.

The Shinewater area of Eastbourne has experienced an increase in problems including criminal damage to properties and buses.

Sussex Police have given PCs Rachel Bourne, Cathy Codling and Lee Willsher the job of youth officers to target the issue. They have identified about 20 people aged from ten to 17, who have regularly been involved in incidents. CCTV images and local enquiries are enabling the officers to channel their efforts more effectively.

They have contacted the children’s parents and created Acceptable Behaviour Contracts (ABCs) to help monitor future behaviour.

PC Bourne said: “We’ve linked with schools and other agencies in the area to underline these measures.

“This will enable intervention from the youth offending team in providing diversionary schemes aimed at weaning children away from crime before it becomes a significant problem.

“We are effectively gatekeepers for the various resources available.

“We can signpost other officers towards what can be accessed to address specific issues involving young people.”

Though still early days, both for the roles being undertaken by prevention youth officers and the initiatives introduced, PC Bourne said it was hoped to gradually turn round rates of offending and build more positive relationships within the community.

She said: “We’re now much more than schools liaison officers and spend a bigger percentage of our time working with young people in the wider community.”

Anyone with concerns about anti-social behaviour is asked to report details online via or call 101.