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Party kids kicked out of venue alone at 4am
MORE than 100 children were turfed out on to the street at 4am after their sleepover party was scrapped due to their wild behaviour.
Parents were left fuming after staff at Partyman World, in Basildon, called time on the overnight bash four hours early, resulting in youngsters as young as 11 and 12 walking home alone.
Billy Alder, 12, walked all the way from the play centre, on the Burnt Mills industrial estate, to his home in Laindon, while Casey Edwards and Jodie Preston, both 14, walked back to Wickford.
Around 115 youngsters were at the party on Wednesday to celebrate the 14th birthday of Danielle Hargrave, who attends Beauchamps High School, in Wickford.
The 8pm to 8am party was supposed to see the youngsters, who were all asked to pay £10 each to attend, enjoying snacks, entertainment and time on the soft play equipment, before crashing down in their sleeping bags.
However, the party turned sour when some youngsters started drinking alcohol and smoking.
Staff at the centre decided to stop the event at 4.15am, leaving the youngsters to fend for themselves outside. Mum Tina Edwards, 42 of Friern Gardens, Wickford, fumed: “I am absolutely disgusted at what has happened.
“My two daughters were thrown out and didn’t get home until 6.30am.
“They had to walk from Partyman World all the way back to Wickford and I am furious about it.
“The thought of children on the street at that time is unthinkable.
“The party was stopped because there were some cigarettes and alcohol. My daughters weren’t involved, yet they still had to leave.”
Sherie Adler’s son also attended the party. The mum, from Somercotes, Laindon, added: “They should have made sure every parent was telephoned.
“My son didn’t have any credit on his phone and he says nobody said they could use the phone inside the play centre.
“God knows what could have happened to my son or any other child. It makes me shudder.”
Some parents have threatened to contact the police and social services, claiming play centre staff should have got the children home safely.
However, Partyman company director, Aaron Othman, defended the firm’s actions, saying he was left with broken tables, smashed lights and one heck of a mess.
Mr Othman said: “This whole thing was just an absolute nightmare.
“We’ve had more than 50 sleepover parties and we have never had any trouble on this scale before.
“We had tables smashed, cables broken, the toilet was completely blocked and there was food scattered all over the play equipment.”
Three members of staff and some parents were on site to supervise, but trouble came to a head when a large group of children began smoking on the soft play equipment.
He said: “Kids had been smuggling in alcohol in fizzy drink bottles as well as cigarettes and we searched every child and confiscated a load of stuff over the course of the party.
“It was was towards the end, when they were posing a massive fire risk, that it got too much.”
Mr Othman, who is now considering whether to hold these parties in the future, added: “We said to every child we’d ring their parents if they didn’t have any credit on their phone and said they could wait inside for a lift, but a load of them just walked off.”