A pensioner has said he is “absolutely terrified” about going home at night after being targeted by vandals who smashed his lounge window in their latest attack.

John Coles has lived in his home for almost 40 years and says the time has come to take a stand against gangs who roam the area frightening people. He said neighbours are in too much fear to report what is going on and stay out of sight.

“Most of the time, neighbours just close their curtains. They don’t want to know because they don’t want to be subjected to it,” Mr Coles, 68, said.

“The lass next door says she’s seen them knocking about in about twos and threes. They’ve been knocking about and there’s been a problem with them.

“She said she wouldn’t want to go out there and put her life or her kids at risk by challenging them.”

But Mr Coles said the time has come to speak out about ongoing issues in the area.

The retired engineer visits his wife Marie in a Gomersal care home every day.

He knows his wife will not return home and wants to move somewhere more manageable as he is starting to struggle with mobility problems.

On Tuesday he said he returned to his home in Firthcliffe Road, Littletown, Liversedge, to find a window had been smashed by a large lump of asphalt which had been thrown through it.

Mr Coles said: “I just felt like just hanging myself. It’s beyond belief. You think, ‘Good God, what else can happen?’ ”

He said his home had been targeted previously and about a year ago fencing he had put up in his garden was smashed. The issue has been getting steadily worse over the past two years, he added.

“It’s sad for a grown man to say it, but I’m absolutely terrified to come home.”

Police are investigating the damage and are mounting extra patrols.

PCSO Dale Liversedge, of Spenborough Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “An offence of criminal has been recorded after windows at the property were smashed.

“Focused patrols are being conducted in the area and I would appeal for any witnesses or anyone with information to come forward. You can call 101 or Crimestoppers in confidence on 0800 555111.”