15:49 19 April 2017
Following complaints about loitering teenagers who try to log on but ending up harassing locals, Leeds City Council has decided to switch off free wifi at community buildings in the evening.
The authority has confirmed that the drastic measure was advised by police after reports of staff and customers being subjected to abuse and threatening language.
A spokesperson for Leeds City Council said: “At the request of West Yorkshire Police, the free wi-fi has been switched off out of hours at some of our community hubs in order to help combat anti-social behaviour.
“The switch-off is only during times when the building is closed, and can be used fully during normal opening hours.
“The council remains fully committed to encouraging the development of digital skills for all residents, with a range of services available through our libraries and youth services.”
The switch-off, which already took effect at Rothwell, Boston Spa, Holt Park, Kippax and Bramley community hubs, comes just weeks after it was announced that some parts of the city would be getting free superfast broadband and free tablet computers as the authority tries to bridge the city’s “digital divide”.