Police officers step up presence in Methilhill

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VANDALISM and theft at Methilhill Primary School have prompted a stronger police presence in the area.

As reported extensively in the Mail, the school has been blighted by damage and the theft of lead from its glass roof.

This has accelerated the need for major repairs at the Chemiss Road building and also led to plans for staff and pupils to be decanted next year while work is carried out.

However, community police and officers from elsewhere in Fife have taken the opportunity to visit the area, and some of the surrounding streets, and make their appearance more widely known.

Residents at last week’s Methilhill community engagement meeting, organised by Fife Constabulary, also heard of hopes to improve security even further at the school premises.

Sturdy fencing had been installed around the building, while finance was being investigated and talks held with locality bosses with a view to obtaining more.

Recurring issues such as vandalism and youth offending were being addressed via regular contact between police, school staff and pupils, householders were told.

Levenmouth had made successful bids under Operation Laser, in which police officers from other departments and other parts of Fife were drafted in to work with local colleagues. This provided extra resources on the ground and allowed the police a bigger, more visible presence, so that incidents could be dealt with more effectively.

Building better relationships with school pupils also helped to establish a form of trust and disrupt some of the youth disorder.

Similar thefts to those at Methilhill Primary had been attempted at other buildings, such as Methilhill Parish Church, which resulted in a call for greater police checks.

The meeting was also told local children had been advised against ‘planking’, the recent craze in which people lie prostrate, face-down, in public places, after one youngster was discovered lying on a road.