Danger alert as children trespass on derelict ex-MoD site

CHILDREN are risking serious injury when trespassing on a derelict former MoD site, police warned.

Thursday, 26th May 2016, 6:01 am
Updated Thursday, 26th May 2016, 8:13 am
PC Greg Meacham at Fraser Range in Eastney

Officers are speaking to and removing youngsters from Fraser Range in Eastney on a daily basis and fear someone could be hurt.

Broken glass is strewn across the huge site, with loose metal and a staircase that drops into nothing all posing a risk to trespassers.

PC Greg Meacham said just last Friday he had to speak to six children aged 15 and 16 who had got into the area – which has previously featured in the television show Doctor Who.

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He said: ‘If they’re seriously injured it will take the ambulance a while and they’ll have to find a gap in the fencing. What they don’t realise if they get hurt is that there’s not going to be anybody round to help them.’

He added: ‘It’s an attraction, it’s a big site, derelict – a bit of excitement just to come in and explore.’

The News understands an interested buyer has recently met the council about building homes on the site.

The problem has been long-standing and with few private security guarding it, youngsters are able to get in.

In 2013 The News reported how the former HMS Saint George barracks was owned by defence firm QinetiQ and had been empty since the 1980s.

The radar tower at the site was demolished in 2013 as trespassers kept climbing it.

Cllr Luke Stubbs is deputy leader at Portsmouth City Council and ward member for Eastney and Craneswater.

He said: ‘The ultimate problem is we’ve got a large derelict site which edges an urban area.

‘Wherever you find structures left empty for long periods of time you end up with security problems.

‘The site needs to be properly secured in order to make it safe and we need a long-term solution.’

A QinetiQ spokesman said: ‘QinetiQ, as the current freeholder, has measures in place to ensure the site remains safe and secure.

‘We conduct regular patrols of the area and share information with police, who we will support in prosecuting anyone found trespassing.’