THE shocking video of youngsters abusing Wigan takeaway staff has prompted one Wigan man to show that those involved were just a minority.
Film of teenagers screaming offensive songs and jumping over the counter to approach staff at McDonald’s in Standishgate has been broadcast to tens of thousands of viewers on YouTube.
As a result, Marcus Walsh, 37, has taken it upon himself to send the staff who were on duty that day a card to show the town’s support of the positive way in which they handled the situation.
However, there won’t just be his signature on it, he has acquired messages from many local businesses and local people.
Such was the overwhelming response, he has had to purchase a second card to get signed and has now set his sights on asking as many local businesses as possible.
Marcus said: “I started in the Grand Arcade and got 32 shops to sign it and then moved on.
“The response was fantastic and just goes to show what wonderful people we have in Wigan.
“I felt sick when I saw the video, really sick. I love Wigan and think the town is such a great place to live.
“I know exactly how the staff felt though. I used to live and work in Manchester and something similar happened to me once.
“A group of young people came into the shop I was working in and just charged through the front door and were extremely intimidating.
“I thought the staff at McDonald’s were wonderful in the way they handled these people who I think deserve banning from Wigan town centre.”
Marcus, who lives in Springfield, was so inspired by the bravery shown by staff that he felt compelled to show them that the whole town supports them.
A proud Wiganer, he is intent on proving to the rest of the country that the yobs involved are merely a minority and that the town is a fantastic place to live. He added: “I love Wigan and there is so much going on in the town.
“The Wigan Life Centre is fantastic and we are eagerly awaiting the arrival of the new Youth Zone.
“We have fantastic football and rugby teams and there is something for everyone to enjoy.
“Young people in this town do so many positive things and I just think it’s a great shame that they could now be labelled with the same brush as these others who are thankfully part of a minority.”
Police have launched an investigation into the goings-on at the restaurant, having arrived to find more than 100 young people inside and outside the premises although far from all of them were bent on trouble.
Film was taken on a mobile phone by a shocked teenager who happened to be in at the same time as the main group.
Headteachers and college principals have been examining the footage to see if any of their students were involved.
Wigan Council’s chief executive Donna Hall later issued a statement which condemned the behaviour but also sought to redress the balance.
Like Marcus, she says the McDonald’s louts were not represenative of local youngsters, the vast majority of whom are industrious and well-behaved.