‘BOY RACERS’ IN TOWN TAKEOVER

Spalding Takeover - 450 cars attended a modified vehicle meet at Spalding's Holland Market car park on Saturday night.
Spalding Takeover - 450 cars attended a modified vehicle meet at Spalding's Holland Market car park on Saturday night.
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EXTRA police had to be drafted in as more than 450 modified cars rolled into town on Saturday night.

Convoys came from all over the county after news of the “Spalding Takeover” spread on social media site Facebook.

The mass of cars descended on Holland Market car park, leading to a number of calls to police by residents concerned about the “racing and revving”.

Officers were aware of the event ahead of time, leading to criticism that they should have stopped it.

Sgt Stuart Hurst said there was no way to stop the meet, but they did liaise with organisers to limit the impact and provided a “robust” response on the night.

Mobile CCTV cameras were used, as well as automatic number plate recognition equipment, and although no arrests were made a number of fines and driving endorsements were handed out to any driver found to be breaking the law.

A few were also issued with section 59 notices for anti-social driving, which could mean their cars are seized if they commit further offences.

Officers will now scour CCTV images recorded on Saturday night to see if any further offences were committed and more drivers could be issued with penalties or prosecuted through the courts.

One angry resident says she is “disgusted” the event was allowed to go ahead, claiming she was almost run off the road by a convoy of cars “racing at speed” as they converged on Spalding.

“Why did the police let all the boy racers from Lincolnshire congregate in Spalding and cause havoc with their revving and racing?” she said. “The amount of bragging and fingers up at the authorities was there on Facebook for all to see.

“This was organised mass disruption and one that could have been stopped.”

And Bill Johnson, who lives in King’s Road, said drivers caused a “hell of a lot of noise” by squealing tyres and beeping their horns.

He said: “It was horrendous anti-social behaviour and it’s about time police did something as half these cars should not be on the roads.”

Sgt Hurst said police had no grounds to stop the event, but said: “I understand that people may have been alarmed to see so many cars coming into town but I am quite pleased with how it went.

“By working with the organisers we were able to limit the impact and confine it to one or two large areas.

“Hopefully the high police presence reassured people.”

Owners of the car parks where the group met will now be contacted to see if they want to pursue organisers to recoup costs of cleaning up a large amount of litter left behind.

After the main event at Holland Market car park broke up at about 10.30pm, smaller splinter groups reconvened at Morrison’s car park in Pinchbeck and at McDonalds at the A16/A151 junction.

Michael Moran, who manages Holland Market, said he had been unaware of the meet and will now be in touch with the police to find out why he was not told ahead of time.

“He said: “The car park is private property and without knowing any more information I will say that I am not keen on the idea of this kind of meet going ahead as it can have an impact on the car park come Monday morning.”

A spokesman for Lincolnshire Police said the cost of the extra resources would have been met from the normal budget and had no adverse effect on police commitments.

“The message to anyone else thinking of organising a similar event is that the police will deal with it in the same robust way.”