Residents have called for emergency safety measures to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour in Finsbury Park.

An online petition stating that the park is “not safe to enjoy or travel through, particularly at dusk, dawn and when dark” has so far gained almost 1,800 signatures.

Finsbury Park lies on the edge of Haringey and borders Islington and Hackney boroughs.

The petition calls on Haringey Council to install live-monitored CCTV cameras and to provide new lighting at the skatepark, on the main carriageway from Seven Sisters and on the walkway to Finsbury Park Station.

It also urges a “zero tolerance” approach to gangs of drug dealers with “regular foot patrols” of police officers.

Responding to the concerns, the council has installed CCTV cameras and will introduce new lighting “as a matter of urgency”.

The Metropolitan Police says it has also stepped up patrols in the park.

Local resident Katy Potts said she started the petition “from personal experience of how unwelcoming the park was to travel through to school and work during the winter”.

She added: “It feels like there is no lighting, and there is a lot of open crime happening.”

Several residents have commented on the petition to express fears over safety.

One wrote: “I’m signing because it should be a basic right for women and children to feel safe walking through their local park.”

Another said: “My grandchildren and I use the park constantly but leave well before dark, as I am afraid to be there then. As much as you can do to make it safer will be a relief.”

Four years ago, a similar petition calling on Haringey Council to make the park safer after dark gained more than 6,000 signatures.

Tom Graham, co-chair of the Friends of Finsbury Park, said his group had been pushing the council for better safety measures for “at least two to three years”.

He added: “We think there is a debate to be had around access to the park late at light. That might be contentious for some groups, but it would make clear that after a certain hour, maybe it is not right to be in the park.”

Mike Hakata, Harringey's deputy council leader and cabinet member for environment, transport and the climate emergency, said the authority had taken “strong action to ensure everyone feels safe in Finsbury Park, with new lighting and CCTV put in place”.

He added: “Five fully operational CCTV cameras have been installed, with a sixth camera to come soon too.

New lighting between the Finsbury gate and the Endymion Road gate, including the spurs that lead to Oxford Road and Stroud Green Road, will also create safe routes to and from the tennis courts and other such park facilities that are open after sundown.

Installation is being treated as a matter of urgency following a number of discussions with local residents.”

The council is investing around £300,000 to fund improvements to Finsbury Park and its facilities this year.

The authority says it has no plans to lock the park at night, as this would prevent people from taking their early morning exercise and disrupt their commute to work.

Cllr Hakata said the council was “determined to work closely with local residents and the wider community to co-produce proposals on redesigning some entrances to the park”.

Chief Inspector Jonathan Waterfield, from the local policing team in Haringey, said: “We understand the concerns shared by Friends of Finsbury Park.

"We have stepped up patrols of open spaces across London, including in Finsbury Park, as part of our work to provide visual reassurance and help deliver a safer environment for people to go about their daily business feeling safe.”

He added: “We continue to liaise with the local authority, partner agencies and community groups to listen to concerns they have and understand how we can work to reduce crime.”

The petition is available here: