SECURITY have been hired by McDonald's in Eastleigh after a gang of youths "threw chairs" around the restaurant.

This comes after trouble flared between a gang of youths in McDonald's on High Street, Eastleigh on Monday January 27, which led to the arrest of a 17-year-old boy.

Now, the fast food giant have hired security guards for Friday and Saturday nights, in an attempt to "help maintain a safe and welcoming environment,"

A McDonald's spokesperson said: "We can confirm a criminal incident originating from outside our restaurant took place on Monday 27th January. Police were called immediately and we will continue to assist them with their investigation.

“The safety and security of our people and customers is of the utmost importance to us. The recent introduction of a security guard on a Friday and Saturday evening is to help maintain a safe and welcoming environment at Eastleigh McDonald’s.

Eastleigh Borough Councillor, Alex Bourne has commended McDonald's for hiring security but sees the act of violence as a "sad indictment on Eastleigh."

He said: "It is a sad indictment on Eastleigh that things like this continue to take place. I'm very disappointed that this incident has happened and it's good that security have been hired to help combat the issue. This is just a sad fact of modern day life but I would rather McDonald's hire security guards to make people feel safe, than let this keep happening and have to close down."

The incident took place at around 5.30pm, when a row broke out between a young man and a gang of five youths, and after officers were called to the scene, they arrested a 17-year-old boy.

As previously reported, this was one of three incidents in Eastleigh town centre so officers have increased their presence in the area with patrols and they have been carrying out a number of stop and searches to ensure those who are intent on causing issues in the centre, are identified and dealt with.

A Hampshire Police spokesperson said: "These kind of incidents will not be tolerated and we are working hard to identify those responsible.

"We can’t do that without your help though. Whilst we are following up all lines of enquiry available to us, including CCTV, we also need to speak to people who witnessed these incidents.

"Please do pick up the phone and let us know if you can help, quoting 44200033667."