Teenagers are “dicing with death” by using a Fife beauty spot as a drinking den, it has been claimed.
Residents in Ladybank say they are fed up with youths holding organised drinking sessions at South Annsmuir Woods and have called on authorities to act following the latest anti-social behaviour to blight the area on Friday night.
Up to 40 local youngsters are reported to have congregated at the site shortly before 8pm and lit a fire, with the festivities continuing until well after midnight.
But aside from the dangers of drinking excessively without proper supervision, the fact that access to the wood is across the main Edinburgh to Perth railway line has prompted fears that it is only a matter of time before someone is killed.
One local resident, who did not wish to be named, said people living in Ladybank were dismayed that so many apparently underage people could so flagrantly flout regulations regarding the alcohol-free status of the woodland.
“We’ve seen this sort of thing before but it’s high time something was done,” he explained.
“A lot of the kids aren’t local and you can see them arriving in the area wearing rucksacks and carrying plastic bags. A lot of them arrive on foot but there are a few in overcrowded cars, often six to a car.
“Judging by the bottles and the rubbish left behind after Friday, that’s not just half a dozen kids taking part and it raises real concerns.
“You need to cross the main railway line to get into the woods, which introduces an element of danger for inebriated young people in darkness. The railway vehicle gates were later found to be opened and these youngsters are dicing with death.”
The resident added that a police presence was seen at around 9pm, but the group apparently reassembled and continued the party after the police had left the area.
“It has to be asked whether parents know what their children are getting up to at the weekend,” he said.
“It’s a problem that’s happened before and they keep coming back every so often — it’s like dogs returning to their own vomit.
“There are many, many issues here but for us they don’t seem to be getting addressed.”