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Residents in Belleek ‘living in fear in their own homes

ELDERLY residents are feeling unsafe in their own homes in Belleek, while many other residents and visitors are also feeling intimidated, after a spate of anti-social behaviour in the village. 
A group of teenagers are reportedly harassing business people, bullying other youths, and banging on the homes of older people in the middle of the night. 
Local Cllr John Coyle is working with police on the issue after being contacted by numerous concerned residents in recent times. 
“This intimidating bullying and physical abuse is totally unacceptable in our village,” he said, condemning the actions of the youths. 
“I am calling on the perpetrators and their parents to stop this behaviour.” 
Cllr Coyle told the Herald there had been a string of incidents reported to him. 
On one occasion a passing delivery driver had to intervene when teenagers were bullying another youth in the village. 
On another occasion, an elderly woman was left in fear after her door was kicked at 2am. 
“She’s not able to sleep at night. Nobody should be scared of living in their house,” he said. 
“When you’re at home you should feel safe. You should be able to go to sleep and have a safe night’s rest. If you were worried and sick in the house and can’t sleep, that’s not good enough. It causes anxiety and everything else.” 
He added: “we would ask the young people to think of others”. 
“We should all have fun, but going around and scaring elderly people and the community isn’t fun. 
“Even if they sat down and spoke to the elderly people, build a connection with them rather than resorting to scaring them in their own homes,” he said.
In response to claims there was nothing for young people to do in Belleek, Cllr Coyle said it was up to the community in the village to come together to address that. 
He said a large group of volunteers and a formal community group would be needed.
“I’m thinking of organising a meeting and asking people to come along so we can ask, what can we do,” said Cllr Coyle, adding that the Council would be able to provide some support. 
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The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
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