Northumbria Police admit they are ‘struggling’ to deal with off-road motorbikes in Blyth

Northumbria Police and Northumberland County Council are working together to tackle the menace caused by off-road motorbikes in Blyth.

The council and the force plan to open a new motorbike dirt track, replacing the PJMX track in Cambois that was closed as it was part of the site purchased by Britishvolt.

It is hoped that by providing a safe and legal place for youngsters to use their vehicles, they will not use the bikes in public areas and cause a nuisance, as well as putting themselves and the public in danger.

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A pilot scheme would even provide transport for young people to get their vehicles to the track.

Speaking at Wednesday’s meeting of the Ashington and Blyth Local Area Council, Northumbria Police Inspector Wayne Daniels encouraged local residents to report any incidents they witnessed. However, he also confessed it was a difficult crime to stop.

He said: “Motorcycle disorder in Blyth is an issue. Virtually every single footpath that leads to Isabella is used by them.

“It’s something that we will tackle over the coming months. Reports this year are really really low, but I think it’s because less people are reporting it.

“We would ask people to ring the police. People are coming up from Darlington and Durham, it is not just locals.

“It’s not a straight-forward issue to deal with. We’re really struggling. They don’t have registrations and they’re wearing balaclavas.”

Coun Cliff Humphrey explained that a lease agreement was being worked on for some land to build a new track near Cramlington.

The Newsham ward representative said: “The land is on an industrial estate. Fingers crossed we can get that.

“Identifying the land has been the hardest thing. We have looked at 10 sites and none were suitable.

“What the scheme would do is pick them up from their home, and they would sign up to say they’re not using it on the streets.”

Coun Brian Gallacher feared some people would not use the track even if they were provided with transport.

He said: “If they don’t want to do it they won’t do it. They will go to their normal places.

“It’s a great idea, it’s a fantastic idea, but it’s getting them there. There will always be a hard-core but the police will have the option to say ‘you can go here, we’ll get you, and you can ride for free – if you’re caught riding your bike you’re off the scheme and your bike is crushed.’

“That’s the way we’re going with this.”

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