Off-road motorcyclists targeted in Thetford Forest for 'anti-social riding'

Police issued eleven S59 notices to motorbike users over the weekend, as part of efforts to clamp down on the illegal use...

Police issued eleven S59 notices to motorbike users over the weekend, as part of efforts to clamp down on the illegal use of vehicles in Thetford Forest. - Credit: Breckland Police

Warnings were handed out to off-road motorbike users for “anti-social riding” in Thetford Forest.  

Police issued eleven S59 notices to motorbike users over the weekend, as part of efforts to clamp down on the illegal use of vehicles in parts of Thetford Forest.  

As well as concerns raised by local residents regarding the anti-social vehicle use in the area, many parts of the forest are designated a Site of Specific Scientific Interest (SSSI) and off-road vehicles use can destroy the local habitat for protected species.  

Norfolk Police, working in partnership with Forestry England, carried out proactive patrols of the forestry areas and issued warnings under Section 59 of the Police Reform Act 2002 to riders with off-road vehicles. 

Thetford beat manager, PC Leslie Maguire, said: “The use of mechanically propelled vehicles such as quad bikes, 4x4s and off-road bikes are not permitted within the forest.  

“In this situation the vehicles will not be covered by insurance and the riders could find themselves being issued with a Section 59 Warning, have their vehicle seized or be prosecuted under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981.  

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“Accepted, low environmental impact activities such as walking and horse-riding in designated areas has increased and there is a real danger of a collision occurring due to illegal off-road vehicle use.  

“I would urge people to enjoy the forest responsibly and only use your off-road vehicle in an area where you have permission to do so.” 

In a tweet, Breckland Police wrote: “#ThetfordSNT have been targeting motorbike riders in Thetford Forest this weekend, issuing 7 #S59 notices for anti-social riding in the area.  

“Riders who flout the rules on vehicle use in the area face being issued with a S59 or have their bike #seized @ForestryEngland #PC898.” 

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