Community will show no tolerance for club arsonist
A SKIM through the archives of the Derby Telegraph over the past few years reflects how inspirational the Drop Inn, the youth club in Belper has become.
The club was set up by the amazing Andrea Fox after she talked to youngsters hanging around the town's River Gardens.
She vowed to take action because they said they had nothing to do.
That was in 2000 and since then thousands of young people have passed through the doors of the club.
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The group began meeting in the basement of Moss Bros, in King Street but this quickly became too small because of the numbers of youngsters interested in joining.
The group moved to an industrial unit in Derwent Street and has been there since.
It is not near housing so youngsters can let their hair down without disrupting any neighbours.
So they happily play pool, computer games or even enjoy an indoor skate ramp. Once a month, the club also holds a Safe Rave, a dance night where there is no alcohol.
Andrea's success has been recognised by a number of honours, both local and national.
Therefore, it is not only she but the whole of the community which will be distressed by the arson attack on the Drop Inn this week.
If the perpetrator is local there is little doubt that they would know of what goes on at the centre.
This makes their actions even more shocking.
However, it also makes it more likely that they will find no safe haven in the community. Let's hope so.