Crackdown on nuisance behaviour as patrols target illegal off-road vehicles


Community safety patrols in Leigh have been tackling nuisance behaviour as part of a clamp down on illegal off-road riding. Within the first day of the operation the patrol saw three vehicle seizures, two no-insurance prosecutions, one section 59 warning, and a notice of intended prosecution served.

Operation Handbrake is a part of Wigan Borough’s Community Safety Partnership work, which sees Wigan Council team up with Greater Manchester Police (GMP) and other partners to tackle community concerns.

Sergeant Dan Canavan, of GMP’s neighbourhood policing team based in Leigh, said: “The aim of this operation is to work with partners and the communities to reduce the impact of off-road bikes, which are causing antisocial behaviour, through a targeted and tactical approach. Intelligence gathering will be a key area of work to develop new opportunities for future prevention.

“We want to create safer spaces in the community and with the help of our partners, we have undertaken a proactive and intelligence-led, highly visible operation, getting these dangerous bikes away from areas which residents enjoy. We’ve had several reports from members of the public who are fed up with off-road bikes and the antisocial behaviour they bring, causing disruption to the walkers, cyclists and families who want to enjoy our green spaces across the Wigan district.

“This operation showcases the resources we have to tackling this issue and the incentives being taken by our partner agencies. I hope these results bring positivity to not only the district but Greater Manchester as a whole given it is an innovative way of tackling a wide-spread problem which damages the quality of life of many residents.”

Operation handbrake will be carried out across the borough, officers and volunteers will continue to share advice and tips on how to report off-road vehicles during the patrol days.

To report off-road vehicles, visit: Report antisocial behaviour | Greater Manchester Police ( You can report information anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers via their website at, or by calling 0800 555 111.