LOCAL residents are still complaining about drug use on Ledbury Recreation Ground, according to town councillor, Tony Bradford.

But most of them are not reporting their concerns to the police, so it appears.

Cllr Bradford, who last week alone was contacted by three constituents about drug use on the recreation ground, is urging people with concerns about the issue to dial 101 or 999.

As it stands, the "rec" is currently not identified as an area of concern regarding drugs, for West Mercia Police's official crime statistics, which currently go up to June.

But the Reporter understands there have been fresh complaints to the police in recent weeks, including from a local woman who was allegedly abused verbally, after challenging youths about drug use on the recreation ground.

In June, three drug-related crimes were reported in the Ledbury area, with one in New Street and two others off Clenchers Mill Lane, Eastnor.

In May, none were reported at all.

But Cllr Bradford said: "At the rec, drug use is every day, and it's been reported to me by members of the public.

"On Tuesday, the floor around the shelter was covered with used cigarettes."

But Cllr Bradford said he could not say if these were used "spliffs" or not.

Cllr Bradford added: "I don't think the police even go down there; but people need to start phoning the police and to get incident numbers. I do know that people are worried they will be exposed as whistleblowers, but they are protected by data protection.

"I think people are scared to phone the police, or they think it's a waste of time."

West Mercia Police was contacted for a comment, but no comment was forthcoming at the time of going to press.

Meanwhile, there is progress on a new shelter which Cllr Bradford and other councillors have been calling for.

Because of the reported problems with drugs, in and around the shelter, Cllr Bradford is keen for the new shelter to be located away from the vicinity of a play area, which is for younger children.

It seems, however, that the existing shelter will remain where it is, at least for the time being.

The chairman of Ledbury Town Council, Cllr Nina Shields said: " I can now confirm that the shelter is on order.

"The location is as recommended by Cllr Bradford, specifically to ensure that the CCTV will cover both the old and the new shelter."