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Last Updated: Friday, 10 November 2006, 12:18 GMT
Centre uses noise to deter youths
The Mosquito device
The sirens emit a high pitched ultra sonic blast audio to young people
A shopping centre is installing a hi-tech sound system to deter youths from hanging around outside stores.

The Westgate Shopping Centre in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, plans to place the Mosquito sirens in the main pedestrian area.

The sirens emit an "extremely annoying" high pitched sound which can only be heard by people under 25.

Police said there had been several complaints from shop owners about large groups causing trouble at the centre.

We are aware that young people hanging about the entrance area to the shopping centre have been off putting for our customers
Adrian Barradell
Co-op supermarket

Pc Simon Towers said: "The system is already widely used by police and local authorities around the UK but this is the first time it will be installed in north Oxfordshire.

"It has received great results elsewhere in the fight against anti-social behaviour so we are hopeful it will have the desired effect."

Adrian Barradell, a spokesman for the Co-op supermarket at the centre, said he welcomed the installation of the system.

He said: "We are aware that young people hanging about the entrance area to the shopping centre have, in the past, been off putting for our customers.

"We welcome the installation of the Mosquito unit and hope it will reassure people, especially those visiting the store in the dark winter evenings."

Police said the sirens would only be turned on "at specific times to target problem periods".




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