Anti-Social Behaviour Tearing Village Apart

Anti-social behaviour including children making home-made flame-throwers is threatening to drive residents of a Calderdale village out of their homes, councillors have been told.

Coun Paul Bellenger (Lib Dem, Greetland and Stainland) told members of full Calderdale Council anti-social behaviour has been going on in the village for about 18 months and residents had had enough.

Stainland’s anti-social behaviour officer had worked tirelessly to deal with issues but needed help “to nip it in the bud for good”, he said.

“Over the past two evenings we have had fires in parks, we have had kids making flamethrowers out of pipes and gas cannisters, knocking on people’s windows.

“We have had some roadworks in the middle of Stainland that have actually closed the road for two days.

“They’ve been removing barriers and allowing vehicles through, charging people in vehicles £2 to come through,” said Coun Bellenger.

He said residents were at the end of their tolerance and people were actually threatening to move out of Stainland.

Leader of the Council, Coun Tim Swift, said some of the issues mentioned were clearly matters for the police rather than the anti-social behaviour team.

He said contacting officers directly might be more useful and serious problems might need co-ordinated action including the police and possible the fire service, said Coun Swift (Lab, Town).

Cabinet member for Public Services and Communities, Coun Susan Press (Lab, Todmorden) said she understood the dog mess issue which was revolting, although catching people was difficult.

In terms of enforcement the council’s new Community protections Team would be in place by the end of this month.

She added that some cuts which had to be made did not mean the council was not doing its best to mitigate problems.

The council has expanded its team of Community Safety Wardens since announcing a clampdown on a range of anti-social behaviour concerns earlier in the year.

The team patrol the borough “24/7” providing visible reassurance and tackling key issues and are supported by a CCTV vehicle and body cameras.

Over spring and summer 2019, they issued 84 Fixed Penalty Notice fines for offences such as littering, dog fouling and failing to adhere to public space protection orders, figures recently released have shown.

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