A FIFTEEN-year-old boy was assaulted after a party at a community hall was gatecrashed by 270 young people.

The Royal British Legion (RBL) Club on Victoria Grove, Bridport, was hired for a 20th birthday party on Saturday. Volunteers say about 80 people were expected to attend – and were shocked when 350 turned up.

Officers were called shortly before 9pm after receiving numerous reports from residents about anti-social behaviour. At about 10.20pm, Bridport Police issued a plea on social media for parents and guardians to collect their children.

Volunteers say it’s the third time in four weeks a party at the hall has been crashed by youths, and have now stopped hiring the club for such events.

RBL Bridport volunteer Travis Feather said: “At the first party, kids turned up and set off the fire extinguishers. There was damage caused at the second one and this was the third time it’s happened. They think they can come here and do what they want.

“The lad who booked the hall was a nice lad and didn’t have social media. He was expecting about 80 people. But word got round and friends told friends who told friends. When we went up there and there were 350 people - you couldn’t even get in to the hall. We had to call the police.”

Mr Feather said the man whose party it was stayed for four hours to help clean up the mess and he doesn’t believe he was responsible for it getting out of hand.

“People have asked why weren’t we staffing it, but we are all volunteers with full-time jobs and the hall is a community asset,” he said. “How were we to know people would abuse it?”

Following Bridport Police’s social media post, many empathised with the town’s youngsters and questioned why there is not more for them to do in Bridport.

Mr Feather agreed, saying: “We understand there’s not a lot for young people to do around here. The nearest place for events of that nature is probably Weymouth, so we don’t blame them for joining in when they see something going on. I think some of the responsibility falls on the town for not having anything for them to do - maybe the town has let them down.”

Volunteers at the club are now putting strict rules in place to prevent it happening again, only hiring out the hall for children’s parties and classes.

A spokesman for Dorset Police confirmed they were called shortly before 9pm to reports of a large group of young people acting anti-socially in Victoria Grove. Officers attended and the group was dispersed.

At 10.30pm, police received a report that a 15-year-old boy had been assaulted after being hit over the head with a glass bottle. He was taken to hospital as a precaution and an investigation is underway into the assault.