IT was installed at a cost of £8,000 to deter and help capture yobs and youngsters risking their lives at York’s Millennium Bridge.

But the CCTV camera, meant to survey the area on and around the bridge, has instead been hanging limply at the top of its pole, pointing straight down at the ground.

A Press reporter and Fishergate Green councillor Andy D’Agorne both spotted the problem and alerted City of York Council to the camera’s demise more than a week ago, and a council spokeswoman said yesterday that it had now been fixed.

Coun D’Agorne said he was concerned at the length of time taken to repair the camera, which helped to both deter and detect crime in the area, and provided reassurance for people using the bridge and paths. It also helped deter young people from risking their lives in summer by jumping from the bridge into the river.

He said the camera was working at tea-time last night, but he was dismayed the bridge lighting was now off and he would be making inquiries as to why this had happened.

The camera, situated just upstream of the bridge on the Butcher’s Terrace side of the River Ouse, was installed in 2001 when youngsters were causing concern by jumping into the River Ouse from the bridge.

Council officials said then that the system, which used digital technology and was directly linked to York police, would lead to the prosecution of those breaking the law on the bridge.

Peter Evely, the council’s then head of highway regulation, said vandals and other offenders could now be easily identified and prosecuted, enabling the police to stop vandalism, cut down public nuisance and improve public safety around the bridge.

He said: “The key to cutting down on vandalism and any antisocial behaviour around the bridge will be using these cameras to constantly monitor the situation.”