WARLTERS Street residents are fed up. Those who live opposite the old school site, which is owned by K mart and is the future site of a shopping centre, have had enough.
The large block was sold by the Catholic Church recently and, ever since, the former St Joseph’s Regional High School, has become a playground for vandals and the unruly.
So much damage and destruction has taken place at the facility, not many of the buildings’ windows are still intact.
Port Macquarie police issued a warning to two 10 year old boys on Wednesday afternoon.
They were found on the site and were seen smashing windows.
Rubbish and glass shards litter the floors, bricks and foreign objects protrude from the wall from where they have been thrown, and some walls have been almost completely demolished.
But the noise and the possibility of someone being hurt has residents up in arms.
They say the vandals have become so complacent, they attack in broad daylight.
Elderly neighbour Jim Steele’s mobility scooter was stolen from his flat, destroyed and found abandoned in Westport Park.
“Obviously, I can’t say for sure it was these kids going in over the road, but it can’t be a coincidence,” he said. “Almost every night of a weekend, or during the school holidays, you hear them over there smashing things and having a party.
“It’s so noisy at times they keep us all awake.”
Loris Beattie said she feared for the safety of everyone involved.
“It can’t be safe over there with all that broken glass,” she said. “Plus, the electricity is even still on - there’s always lights on over there.”
Gary Knox and John Atkinson also are fed up both the noise and the eyesore of all the vandalism.
They said residents in the area were sick of calling police. “By the time they [police] get here, they’ve all run off,” Mr Atkinson said. “Something needs to be done about it, whether it is fenced off or just demolished, so there’s nowhere to hang around.”
Meanwhile, K MART representatives refused to answer questions about safety implications at the site, which still is connected to power, when they were contact by the Port News yesterday.
But the representative said they were planning to make the area safe.
“K mart are working closely with the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council to be at a point where a development application can be lodged for a K mart store on the Port Macquarie site,” national property manager Ben Smith said. “While the planning process is underway, K mart is performing regular ground maintenance around the site, and will be adding additional fencing to ensure the area is safe and secure.”