POLICE have seized two motorbikes from a Newport housing estate in a bid to ease the off-road racing problem in the area.

The move has been welcomed by Bettws residents, who say they have been plagued by illegal off-road bikers.

Officers say they believe the two off-road motorbikes they seized from a Newport city council-owned garage on the estate were stolen vehicles. No arrests have been made in connection with the seizure, and inquiries are continuing.

Bettws grandmother Edna Evans, 72, said: "Things have definitely improved since those bikes were seized, but we still have someone else causing problems.

"He is going up and down the Bettws Brook on his bike most days, especially the weekends.

"It's hard for the police to catch them, but we are determined to stop this." She said the latest off-road biker was being seen regularly down as far as Roding Close and up in Blackwater Close.

Mrs Evans added: "It's dangerous for residents. If someone is walking along they feel intimidated by these bikes.

"If someone is frail - and fortunately I'm not - it can be terrifying for them. "They should have their own area for this sort of thing. All they seem to be concerned with is making a noise and annoying everyone else."

Mrs Evans, who moved to Newport from Australia seven years ago, is the vice-chairman of the Bettws in Bloom environmental group.

Inspector Paul Griffiths, of Bettws police, said: "Off-road racing is a danger to others using the area in a lawful and peaceful manner.

"It damages the land and causes noise pollution. "These seizures are part of a continuing campaign to address the problem of off-road racing. We are making a difference.

"Inquiries are ongoing in regard to the seized motorbikes." He said it was often difficult to arrest off-road racers, as police on foot or in regular cars could not catch them.

The bikes were seized by police on July 28. Meanwhile, police in Pill have been battling against similar problems. Off-road bikers continue to use the Millennium fields, where children play. Police are videoing the area in a bid to identify anyone using motorbikes there.