Police clampdown on off-road bikers

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Off-road bikers are being warned to stay out of woodlands, fields and bridleways as police continue a crackdown.

A recent day-long operation around Mansfield Woodhouse, Warsop and Forest Town led to several bikers being stopped by the police’s special off-road motorbike team.

Involving up to 12 officers, they can be deployed on motorbikes to pursue bikers who are riding illegally across fields and in woods.

During the operation, two bikes were seized, while others were found to be riding on backroads without licenses, insurance or MOTs.

Others received warnings that action would be taken if they are caught again.

Sgt Paul Clarke, from Mansfield Woodhouse, said it was not just teenagers, but across the age spectrum.

During the operation the team even came across an entire family who had come for a day out and had transported their dirt bikes in the back of a van.

He said:“Bikers are going into the wooded areas around Forest Town, Warsop and Mansfield Woodhouse and frightening people.

“People are going for a walk and these bikes are going really fast. It’s anti-social behaviour at the end of the day, and unless it’s their private land, they should not be doing it’.

“Trees that have been cut down are being laid down to stop them, but they are just seeing it as another challenge.

“We want to discourage it. The woods are used for everybody to use.

“I’ve had people come to me and say they don’t want to walk there anymore, or take their dogs. They are really getting fed up of it.”

The operation was funded between Mansfield District Council and the police.

Insp Mark Webster, from Mansfield Woodhouse, said: “It’s thanks to Mansfield District Council, and especially Coun Mick Barton who has really helped and supported us, that we have the funding to run this.

“We’ve had numerous meetings with the public, it’s become quite a concern 
and people are expecting