Parents and guardians in Greenwich have been given a stark warning by police following anti-social behaviour with fireworks.

The Safer Schools Sergeant for the Greenwich borough, Geoff Warren, has written a letter to parents.

He asked them to ensure their children are not present in Woolwich Town Centre unless accompanied by an adult on Bonfire Night.

It follows "hundreds of youths" throwing fireworks, causing disorder and hanging around the town centre last weekend - during a "horrible" and "saddening" evening.

One police officer was injured by a firework and a young man was stabbed in the town centre, and Sergeant Warren added "it was only luck" that prevented more people getting seriously hurt.

He added that even if a child was a spectator, they are "responsible" for creating physical cover in crimes being committed.

Sergeant Warren urged parents that if their children are in Woolwich Town Centre over this weekend, they should "come down, find them and take them home", along with any of their friends.

He pleaded with parents to do "everything" they can to ensure children are at home or in a safe place.

The full letter, issued on Monday, said: "Dear Parents and Guardians

"I am writing to you all in my role as Safer Schools Sergeant for Greenwich Borough and as an officer who witnessed the horrible scenes in Woolwich Town Centre last night and earlier in the week.

"Yesterday evening myself, my team and many other officers were deployed in Woolwich Town Centre to deal with hundreds of youths, throwing fireworks, causing disorder and 'hanging around'.

"There was also a young man stabbed in the town centre last night and a vulnerable member of the public receiving medical attention after a firework was thrown in his direction.

"Many fireworks were thrown in this busy area where young children, elderly and vulnerable people were present and it was only luck that prevented more people getting seriously hurt.

"Can I please appeal to your duty as a parent/ guardian to ensure your child is not present unless accompanied by a responsible adult in Woolwich Town Centre in the evenings leading up to and including fireworks night.

“Even if your child was a spectator to what was going on they are responsible for creating physical cover in crimes being committed and an audience.

“I feel the community was let down by the child present and it is your responsibility as parents and guardians to make sure they do not let you and your community down again,

“If you believe your child is in the town centre any evening this week and the coming weekend can you please come down, find them, take them home and if you recognise any of their friends, offer to take them home too and/ or inform their parents.

“We can only make community safe if we work together in doing so.

“I have served Greenwich Borough for many years and I was saddened to see the way children and young adults were behaving.

“Please do everything you can to ensure your children are at home or in a safe place and not unaccompanied in the town centre any evening this week and the weekend.

“Your sincerely, Sergeant Geoff Warren.”

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