POLICE officers assisted British Transport Police officers and BCP Council staff after teenagers were seen jumping from the railway bridge over the River Avon in Christchurch.

Councillors and residents have voiced concerns about the safety of young people as children were spotted climbing up onto the iron bridge near to Christchurch station and leaping into the water below.

Dorset Police and BCP Marine Boat have continued patrols of the area.

People have been seen jumping from the bridge numerous times during lockdown, the most recent being Tuesday July 14.

A spokesman from Dorset Police said: “Officers were working with partners at BCP Council and BTP following a number of reports recently in relation to groups of people of different ages gathering in the area and jumping off the bridge.

“On this occasion a small group were spoken to and given words of advice and education. Patrols in the area will continue.”

Trespassing Welfare Officer from The British Transport Police worked with members of Dorset Police to educate the young people involved of the dangers of railway lines

Councillors have condemned the “extremely dangerous” acts as groups of young people have been seen climbing up onto the iron bridge many times before the incident last week.

Christchurch ward councillor Mike Cox said: ““The practice of jumping from the railway bridge, or any bridge, into a river is extremely dangerous and risks causing severe injury to those taking part.

“I am glad the children in question have been spoken to and I would hope their parents have also been informed.”

Fellow councillor Peter Hall added: “This must be stopped, for health and safety reasons.

“I am pleased that the police were involved, and BCP officers. I sincerely hope this dangerous activity will not happen again.”