POLICE officers are ramping up their efforts to tackle delinquent youths travelling to Wivenhoe and causing trouble.

Essex Police said its officers are investigating reports of a group of about 20 young people harassing residents and damaging property in the town.

The group has been seen to leave the train station before engaging in anti-social behaviour, including throwing bricks around the graveyard of St Mary’s Church.

It is said the troublemakers are children aged between 12 and 18.

Gazette: Causing chaos - the youngsters in the churchyardCausing chaos - the youngsters in the churchyard (Image: Submitted)

A police spokesman said: “Over the past week we have also received reports of shopkeepers, bar staff and members of the public receiving abuse and the doors to properties being damaged.

“We received reports during the Easter holidays between the hours of about 1pm and 5pm.

“Colchester’s Community Policing Team has conducted lengthy inquiries as they work to identify the perpetrators.”

Speaking to the Gazette last week, one victim said the yobs had been targeting her home for four months on and off before returning over the Easter break.

Gazette: Action - police officers engage with residents in WivenhoeAction - police officers engage with residents in Wivenhoe (Image: Essex Police)

She said: “I’ve tried to brush it off and ignore them but they are so aggressive it became unbearable.

“The group was very intimidating, it was actually boys and girls.”

Police officers have now implemented a patrol plan which involves maps detailing areas of concern to ensure a careful watch is kept over trouble hotspots.

Police Community Support Officer Emma-Lea Wright said: “As the community team, we know how concerning this issue is for people living and working in Wivenhoe.

Gazette: Presence - police officers at Wivenhoe train stationPresence - police officers at Wivenhoe train station (Image: Essex Police)

“We are working tirelessly on this issue, using our strong working relationship with Wivenhoe Town Council and local businesses to ensure we are in the right places at the right times.”

Residents are being urged to not post CCTV, videos and images of the youngsters online to avoid unverified information being spread.

Instead, it should be sent to the police.

Community Policing Team inspector Stuart Austin added: “It is important to emphasise Wivenhoe is a safe area to live and work in.”

“This thorough action taken by our PCSOs and officers shows our commitment to driving down anti-social behaviour quickly when it presents itself.”