THERE are calls for more to be done to tackle youth knife crime in Swindon following the stabbing of a 14-year-old boy.

The people of Haydon Wick were shocked when a teenager was violently attacked close to a primary school on Wednesday afternoon.

Sally Stoddart, the landlady of the Shield and Dagger pub, argued a higher police presence in the parish would act as an effective deterrent to stop it happening again.

She added: “I’m not surprised that the stabbing happened but it’s absolutely terrible. I feel that there are not enough police around – I know they have not got a lot of funding but something needs to be done.

“It’s scary to think there are lads going around carrying knives that they pull out at the drop of a hat. This is a nice area but things are getting worse.

“These gangs need to be dispersed, we’ve had problems with them before. A lot of kids don’t have any respect for the police but sometimes if they see that police are around, they behave themselves.

“I have asked for more police to be around and each time I ask, they send more for a week then that’s it.

“Sometimes I see them getting fish and chips over the road and they’re welcome to sit in my car park while they eat, at least they could keep an eye on things that way.”

Police are investigating the attack, which happened on a path which borders Haydonleigh Primary School and a Morrisons on Thames Avenue shortly after 4.30pm on Wednesday.

An 18-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm after the younger victim suffered a stab wound to his arm. The boy went to hospital for treatment and has now been discharged.

Swindon Borough Council leader David Renard is a ward councillor for Haydon Wick.

He said: “This sort of thing is extremely unusual. It’s a nice area – I’ve lived here for 30 years and nothing like it has ever happened before.

“It will be of concern to people but I hope and expect that it’s a one-off incident. The police have been very proactive in their response to this and the community has been supportive.

“I imagine that everyone will now go about their business in the normal way.”

Anyone with any information should call police on 101.

'What is our world coming to?'

SHOCKED Adver readers reacted to reports of a teenager being stabbed near a supermarket and school in Haydon Wick.

Naomi Collier said: “It’s dreadful to know this is happening, especially outside schools.”

Lucy While said: “It’s scary what the outcome could have been. Why do thugs think it’s cool to carry weapons?”

Elspeth Hughes said: “What is our world coming to? This is an absolute disgrace.”

Becky Johnson said: “It’s getting to the point where kids won’t be allowed out to play.”

Laura O’Sullivan said: “What is going on? To think, we so casually walk over to Morrisons with the children.”

Jo Rogers said: “Until there’s more of a deterrent for carrying or using a knife and a bigger police presence on the streets, this will only get worse.”

Lisa Barrett: “It’s shocking. I hope whoever did this to the poor boy gets locked up and they throw away the key.”