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The Nelson Photo News



Forum and Aginum

New Year's Eve a Shameful Shambles

Two years ago in Trafalgar Street we thought we'd seen the most depraved acts of hooliganism we thought could be perpetrated during the so-called "festivities" of New Year's Eve, But compared to the actions and attitudes of many who turned out in Trafalgar Street on New Year's Eve this holiday period to usher in the new year, these acts were kindergarten stuff. As in previous years, bottle throwing and smashing of bottles was the overture to the main performance of the evening-the arrests of law-breakers. But this year there was added the intense animosity of a group of "merrymakers" towards a group of motor-cyclists who had come to Nelson for a holiday. Obviously some of these young hooligans were spoiling for a fight and what better target than the motor-cyclists whose unkempt appearance was at variance with their gleaming machines. And so, during the evening words led to blows and fights and arrests. And the Motor-Cyclists Were Not the Antagonists. Partly to blame for the incidents that occurred were the big crowd of "respectable" citizens who, sensing an impending confrontation between the police and the motor-cyclists, turned out to "watch the fun". When it became very obvious that the police had no cause to look even sideways at the motor-cyclists, an unruly element took a hand in the affair. The outcome of the evening was 20 arrests, two persons admitted to hospital as the results of fights, and a sea of smashed glass on the roadway.