Venue: Wardleworth Community Centre, South Street, Rochdale OL16 2EP. View directions
Contact: Gary Finch - Tel: 01706 924817
The meeting was chaired by Beryl Lloyd.
Everyone was welcomed to the Forum and reminded to observe and respect the code of conduct for the duration of the meeting.
Apologies had been received from Councillors Ali Ahmed and Iftikhar Ahmed and Roger Hartley.
PACT meeting - Greater Manchester Police
PC Mahmood and PCSO’s Palmer and Stewart attended the meeting for this item.
The Forum was informed that the following incidents had been reported in the Ward from 1st May 2018 until 6th August 2018;
Assault and Harassment 19 - same period last year 23
Public Order 6 – same period last year 17
Possession of Weapons 2 – same period last year 0
Assault on Police Constable 2 – same period last year 0
Assault without Injury 20 – same period last year 30
Burglary (Residential) 1 – same period last year 3
Burglary (Non-Residential) 3 – same period last year 3
Robbery 2 – same period last year 1
Kidnapping 1 – same period last year 1
Theft from Person 2 – same period last year 0
Theft from Vehicle 7 – same period last year 4
Shoplifting 2 – same period last year 10
Theft of Motor Vehicle 4 – same period last year 1
Criminal Damage 9 = same period last year 19
Drug Offences 5 – same period last year 5
Residents expressed their concerns regarding the amount of drug activity that occurs in the Ward and GMP’s inadequate and ineffective approach in dealing with this problem. Residents stated that reports of drug activity in the area are constantly reported, yet very little seems to be done. A number of hotspots were also identified – Norry’s Street, Oswald Street, South Street Play Area, Shell Petrol Station (Yorkshire Street), Hamer Hall Crescent and the ‘quadrangle’ (North, South, East and West Street).
GMP acknowledged that drug activity in the Ward is problematical, however reduced resources and capacity is affecting the ability of GMP to react. It was also explained that police resources are loaded towards identifying individuals higher up the organised drug hierarchy rather than low level drug dealers, as this level of operation can be replaced very easily and quickly. It was also explained that GMP operated an incident grading system which determines priorities and that residents should continue to report incidents, with as much information as possible to the 101 number.
Residents requested that GMP reviewed their approach to drug activity in the Ward as the current one is having very little impact. GMP agreed that information would be provided at the next Area Forum meeting in relation to:
- How drug related issues are dealt with (Strategic)
- What approach is taken in dealing with drug activity in the Ward (Operational)
- Number of arrests made.
GMP also agreed to review the number of calls received regarding drug activity in the Ward.
Residents also highlighted the current poor condition of the ‘Lodge’ site on Red Lane / Park Road and the anti-social behaviour that is ongoing in the vicinity primarily around Hamer Hall Crescent.
A Ward Councillor commented that an assault had recently taken place on East Street and that he would receive a phone call from GMP about this – no one had been in touch. GMP agreed to investigate further. ... view the full minutes text for item 137.
The minutes of the area forum meeting held on Monday 6 August 2018 were approved as a correct record.
A Ward Councillor commented that the anti-social behaviour that is being experienced by residents who live close to the private piece of land known as the ‘Lodge’ is continuing. In addition residents attending tonight’s Forum meeting had concerns about the current state of this land – extensive overgrown bushes and trees – which are very close to residents properties.
The Township and Engagement Officer acknowledged he was aware of the problems being experienced by residents. It was commented that work had been carried out on the land some eighteen months ago by Community Payback, however since then the owner of the land had submitted a planning application to develop the land (current status unknown) and it had become apparent that many trees on the land are subject to Tree Preservation Orders.
As a consequence of this any dealings on this matter are complex as the land is privately owned.
The Township and Engagement Officer agreed to investigate this further and respond directly to the residents who attended the meeting.
Residents raised the following issues:
1. A resident explained to the Forum that plans were being developed to bring together organisations that provided youth provision in the Ward. It was explained that currently different organisations are all bidding for the same funding to provide generally the same services. Discussions between organisations are ongoing in addition to consultation with young people to understand the services that are required.
It was agreed that the Forum be informed of developments in relation to this matter.
2. A resident commented that he had recently returned to live in the Ward after a number of years away. He stated that the area does not seem to have moved on, deprivation and poverty still remains and he questioned where investment had taken place. He asked that a report be commissioned to investigate the regeneration projects that had taken place in the area in recent years.
Given the complex nature of the work that was being requested the Township and Engagement Officer asked that the resident contact him with an outline of the areas he wanted to be explored. This was agreed.
3. Concerns were raised about the amount of fly tipping that occurs in the Ward and the need to enforce incidents of this nature more effectively.
The Forum was reminded that there are plans to introduce schemes into the Ward that will educate residents about recycling and discourage illegal tipping. It was also stated that many properties in the Ward are privately rented therefore landlords should take more responsibility when accepting new tenants and clearing properties.
Enforcement does occur, however in many respects this can only happen if Enforcement Officers are in the right place at the right time, residents are willing to provide statements or other evidence is available. Residents were encouraged to keep reporting incidents of illegal tipping via the Councils ‘fly tipping portal’ or telephone 0300 303 8884.
4. A resident commented about the quality of the repairs being carried out on pot holes in the Ward.
It was suggested that residents should report incidents of this nature via the pot hole portal on the Council’s website or telephone 0300 303 8879.
5. A resident complained about the state of the area surrounding the ‘quadrangle’ off North Street. The area suffers from rodent infestation, littering and overgrown vegetation. It was also commented that similar problems exist on Buckley Street which it was argued is caused by the shops that front Yorkshire Street.
This will be reported, however the Township and Engagement Officer commented that he had recently been copied into an email that stated that the issues mentioned above would be investigated further.
No items were raised.
Date and time of the next meeting
Wardleworth Community Centre
Monday 17 December 2018, commencing 6.30pm.