Metford Community Hall trashed in wild party

Broken glass and discarded underwear were left behind after a wild party at Metford Community Hall on Saturday night.

DISAPPOINTED: Maitland east ward councillor Ben Whiting at Metford Community Hall, which was vandalised during a party on Saturday night. Picture: Marina Neil

DISAPPOINTED: Maitland east ward councillor Ben Whiting at Metford Community Hall, which was vandalised during a party on Saturday night. Picture: Marina Neil

Residents were disgusted by the party, which resulted in destruction of the hall and nearby property.

Maitland City Council, which owns the building, advised that plumbing, windows and fencing were damaged during the evening.

The hall is closed until further notice.

Nearby residents said about 150 young people piled into the building and spilled out onto the street during the evening.

April Foster, who lives next to the hall, said things were thrown on her property and someone jumped her fence and ran across her yard.

Another resident, Megan Sinclair, said she went outside the next day and saw broken glass and underwear.

“It was an absolute disgrace,” she said. “You have the odd party that’s a bit loud, but nothing like this.”

A third resident, who did not wish to be named, said there were fights and underage people drinking and yelling.

After police broke up the party, some attendees gathered at the Metford Train Station.

A 22-year-old man was arrested at the station and charged with offensive conduct and intimidation. A 16-year-old male was also allegedly found with a knife.

Reports were made to Metford Community Watch about the incident.

Neighbourhood Watch founder Bill Hackney said the event was disappointing.

The party was discussed with police and council representatives at the Neighbourhood Watch monthly meeting on Monday night. 

Councillor Ben Whiting, who is chairperson of Bruce Street Community Hall, attended the meeting.

He said halls were great facilities, but gatherings like these should be held in licensed premises.

Cr Whiting said damages would be paid by those who hired the hall.

Council’s community and recreation services manager Lynn Morton said council was told the function would be a farewell party and be held from 6-11pm.

“No alcohol was permitted, a bond was taken and the guests were instructed to clean the hall before leaving that night,” she said.

“Booking systems and procedures have worked well to date, however council will review current operations.”

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