CONCERNS have been raised after it was revealed that security guards at Clyde Shopping Centre have reportedly been spat at and punched.

At a recent meeting held to discuss a rise in anti-social behaviour [ASB], councillors branded the alleged attacks as “simply unacceptable”.

Clydebank Post: The recent meeting was attended by Councillor Sophie Traynor [right], Councillor James McElhill [middle], and Councillor Lauren Oxley [left]The recent meeting was attended by Councillor Sophie Traynor [right], Councillor James McElhill [middle], and Councillor Lauren Oxley [left] (Image: Sophie Traynor)

Over the past few weeks, police have reported an increase in ASB incidents in the town centre, particularly at the shopping centre.

These include damage to buses in the Chalmers Street area, fire-raising, fighting, and youngsters carrying weapons.

Councillor James McElhill, who attended the meeting, said: “We recently had a round table discussion on anti-social behaviour.

“We discussed a number of incidents that were occurring in and around the shopping centre from stones being thrown at buses and other vehicles, house and church windows being broken and aggressive behaviour towards security staff, and others, including being spat on and even punched.

“It would appear to be the same group of young people responsible for these actions and they are and will be identified.

“Their behaviour is simply unacceptable. Only by all agencies working together, police, transport, council, and others, can the problem be fully addressed and resolved and that is what we are doing.

“We are of course appreciative that 99% of young folk are fine upstanding members of the community and that should never be lost on any of us.”

A multi-agency operation was launched recently in an effort to tackle this issue at a local level.

Last week, we exclusively revealed that ScotRail is considering removing stones from Clydebank train station after several incidents where rocks were launched at buses.

Councillor Sophie Traynor, who organised the meeting, said she is “deeply concerned” over these attacks and will be keeping a close eye on the situation.

Cllr Traynor added: "I am deeply concerned about the rise in the anti-social behaviour within Clydebank town centre. 

“These incidents are completely unacceptable and further work is needed to defer and tackle the issue.

“This is having a direct impact on the local businesses and the wider community. 

"I have been working alongside a range of partners; including West Dunbartonshire police, Clyde Shopping Centre and SPT, to discuss how best to tackle this problem.

“As a local councillor, I will be keeping a close eye on this matter and playing my part to find a long-term resolution."

A West Dunbartonshire Council spokesperson confirmed CCTV will be installed at additional locations in the town as part of the local action plan.

They said: “We are happy to be involved in this partnership approach to reduce anti-social behaviour in our area.

“As well as conducting regular patrols and ensuring tenants are aware of how anti-social behaviour from them or dependents living with them can impact upon their tenancy, we are working with all partners to develop an action plan including the installation of CCTV in specific additional locations.”

Meanwhile, Councillor Lauren Oxley revealed the ASB issue will be continued to be monitored as the summer holidays approach.

Schools across West Dunbartonshire break up on June 27 for seven weeks returning for the new term on August 16.

Cllr Oxley added: “The recent rise in antisocial behaviour that we have witnessed in the town centre is shocking and I know it is of huge concern to residents in Clydebank Waterfront.

"We had a productive meeting with representatives from a range of organisations that have been impacted by the matter, allowing us to get an insight into various perspectives and experiences.

"Following this, we then discussed how we can move forward to collectively tackle this problem.

"It was encouraging to hear from the local Police Scotland representative that they are in the process of setting up a partnership with the businesses and organisations affected in order to ensure that they are dealing with incidents quickly and efficiently and that they are providing adequate support.

"As the summer holidays approach, I will be continuing to monitor this issue and provide assistance where required.”