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Teenage fighting breaks out in Lido

PUBLISHED: 15:57 02 July 2009 | UPDATED: 16:17 07 September 2010

THE heat appeared to have got to a few youngsters at the Parliament Hill Lido yesterday when police had to be called in to quell trouble. The outdoor pool was packed with teenagers making the most of the sweltering summer conditions. But by early evening

THE heat appeared to have got to a few youngsters at the Parliament Hill Lido yesterday when police had to be called in to quell trouble.

The outdoor pool was packed with teenagers making the most of the sweltering summer conditions.

But by early evening officers from the Heath Constabulary had to be called in when trouble flared.

One onlooker was told by a member of the constabulary that officers had to be called out to deal with fighting on five separate occasions, some involving girls.

Some of the youngsters are believed to have been drinking alcohol throughout the afternoon. Staff were forced to close the pool for a short time so they could clean up the mess left behind.

Police were also seen questioning two youths outside the nearby Gospel Oak Overground station, one of whom was covered in blood stains.

Paul Maskell, leisure and events manager of Hampstead Heath denied there was any fighting.

He said: "There were incidents in which young people were behaving badly at the lido, as happens from time to time. Our staff called the constabulary who were able to deal with the situation appropriately. These were not violent fights, but general bad behaviour from a small group of children. Nevertheless, their behaviour was unacceptable so staff and constabulary stepped in to thwart it. Incidents such as these demonstrate the usefulness of having a dedicated Constabulary on the Heath."

There are concerns the Lido and the surrounding Heath could become a focal point for rowdy youths throughout the hot summer months.

Among the swimmers forced to wait outside until staff had cleared away the debris yesterday was one teacher from an Edgware secondary school.

He said: "I have spotted some girls from my school here, which seems strange because it is a long way to come to have a fight.


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