PURBECK police have been tackling an increase in anti-social behaviour in the area.

Concerns were raised by Wool residents after a large group of youths caused a disturbance at the recreation ground last Saturday night.

Neighbourhood police have increased their patrols to manage the issue and organised activities to increase engagement and education.

One officer organised a football tournament between youth teams and the neighbourhood policing team, which has resulted in a reduction in anti-social behaviour in Wareham town centre.

Several young people have been spoken to in front of their parents, and section 59 notices have been issued for inconsiderate driving.

A spokesperson for Purbeck police said: "Neither the police nor the public are keen to criminalise children; however, when young people are continually coming to our attention for crime and disorder, police and our partners will have no choice but to use criminal powers to deal with their behaviour.

"We have worked with partner agencies and the public and tried to think outside the box to come up with creative solutions."

Police are urging parents and guardians to ask where their children are going and who they will be with, and to ensure they are home by a reasonable time.