Spar Supermarket manager Vicki Everson believes the new security gates at the Suffolk Park Shopping Centre will discourage vandalism within the complex.
Spar Supermarket manager Vicki Everson believes the new security gates at the Suffolk Park Shopping Centre will discourage vandalism within the complex. DAVID NIELSEN

Suffolk Park shopowners hit by rise in vandalism

VICKI EVERSON, manager of the Suffolk Park Spar Supermarket, has had enough of vandals in her area.

She has decided to place her faith in a large set of gates being built at the front of the Suffolk Park Shopping Centre.

It is hoped the gates, which are in the process of being installed, will discourage vandalism within the small complex.

“There is a lot of vandalism here at night because of the lack of security, particularly with the hotel being so close,” Ms Everson said.

“We have had windows smashed before, but we aren't the only ones affected. There are many other shops with the same problems within the area.”

The Suffolk Park Hotel was asked to comment on the vandalism occurring in the area, but refused to make a statement.

Gemma Osmond, owner of Indian restaurant Yellow Flower in Suffolk Park, believes the gates are a Band-aid solution to a long-term problem.

“Even though there have been security cameras installed in the past, and now these gates, the problem of vandalism still remains,” Ms Osmond said.

“Everyone in the community should be doing more to fix this problem, like the parents of the vandals, or more police beats within the area.”

Byron Bay police were asked to comment on the vandalism within Suffolk Park and a possible solution, but were unable to make a statement.

“With the new furniture that has been placed in the centre, from a shopkeeper's perspective a large set of gates seems like a terrific way to prevent vandalism,” Ms Everson said.

“It will not only protect the newly-installed furniture, but also the shops within the complex that are usually targeted by vandals.”

The gates may be only a small step to stopping vandalism within the complex, but they are giving some peace of mind at night to Ms Everson and other shopkeepers within the centre.



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