AN ongoing investigation is taking place in Millom following a number of incidents of criminal damage in the area.

Residents have spoken to this publication and used social media to highlight soaring vandalism on properties in town.

Later last month, a house in Millom was graffitied with the words 'not welcome scum' and 'scum out'. The same happened to a local business. 

Both incidents were reported to Cumbria Police on January 29 and 30.

A spokesperson for Cumbria Police explained that the Whitehaven Neighbourhood Policing Team are investigating a number of incidents of criminal damage.

They said: "The incidents include damage to properties on Albert Street, Holborn Hill and Nelson Street and damage caused to a vehicle.

"Criminal damage will not be tolerated, and officers are investigating each incident and will deal robustly with any offenders. Patrols have been increased in the area with officers paying attention to identified areas."

Cumberland Council said that Cumberland Enforcement Officers are aware of these incidents.

A Cumberland Council spokesperson said: "Cumberland Enforcement Officers are aware of this graffiti and are in Millom looking to tackle instances of anti-social behaviour such as graffiti, dog fouling, littering, etc.

"Whilst there is an ongoing investigation with Cumbria Constabulary it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

Councillor Bob Kelly shared his views, saying that the graffiti was an 'overreaction' and he fears that people of 'extreme politics may be using it as a way of causing 'trouble.'

He said: "I certainly don't defend the use of graffiti or smashing up a window in any way. 

"Somebody found out that a number of houses of multiple occupation were being bought for development, and I think that hit the fan a little bit before anyone was officially told of what was happening.

"The shock that a significant number of people may come into town - and that together with the feeling that Millom has been left behind and does not have the resources that it needs already.

"We don't have an NHS dentist in town, and the GP practices are very busy and the idea that we are going to get more people who would need these services coming to town I think frightened people that there is going to be less access to these facilities for them."