Action to tackle Askham Bar flytipping

Local Lib Dem councillor Stephen Fenton is leading efforts to tackle flytipping at the recycling banks at the Askham Bar Tesco car park.

There are persistent problems with household waste being dumped here, and there is an accumulation of litter around the recycling banks. The popularity of the clothes and shoes recycling banks has also led to bags of donations being dumped next to the full bins.

Dumping at Yorkshire Air Ambulance clothing banks

Household waste flytipped

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 20 August Stephen arranged a meeting on site with representatives from Yorwaste, City of York Council and Tesco to discuss the problems and what can be done to improve the situation. Actions arising from the meeting included checking on the frequency of emptying recycling banks which are sometimes overflowing, and exploring options for more proactive enforcement to increase the chances of catching flytippers.

It was noted that the return of the second cardboard bank has helped to improve matters in recent weeks.

Stephen commented  “There are many parties involved in the maintenance and management of this site – for example, a range of different companies are responsible for emptying the variety of banks. It was good to get some of the key players together to discuss the problems and try to come up with a plan.

“It’s important that when flytipping is spotted, the council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement Team is notified via neo@york.gov.uk or tel. 01904 551555. They can then look for evidence which will help to identify the cuplrit.”

Stephen has made contact with two of the companies responsible for emptying the donation banks for Yorkshire Air Ambulance (clothes) and Variety Club (shoes) following a build-up of donations piled up against the bins.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The response from both firms was positive. SOEX UK Ltd, which manages the shoe bank, confirmed that it will take steps to ensure that it is emptied every Tuesday. Bag It Up Ltd, which manages the clothes bank, stated that they are looking into these issues and tweaking schedules to get on top of any sites that have overflow issues.

Stephen said “I’m pleased with the quick response from the firms that look after the clothing and shoe banks, and their commitment to action. If any residents want to donate but find that the banks are full, please take the bags home and do not dump them next to the bins.”

Dog fouling concerns on North Lane

In response to concerns raised by residents about dog fouling, a sign has been installed on North Lane in Dringhouses reminding irresponsible owners of the penalties of not picking up after their dog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The sign has been funded from the Dringhouses & Woodthorpe Ward Committee budget.

Security patrols get underway in Woodthorpe

Local Lib Dem councillors have welcomed the start of daily security patrols in the Ashbourne Way / Summerfield Road area, following concerns from residents about anti social behaviour.

Cllr Ashley Mason with the patrol vehicle on Summerfield Road

The Dringhouses & Woodthorpe ward budget is being used to fund a six-month trial of daily visits by a Gough & Kelly security patrol with body-worn cameras. The aim is to gather evidence of the nature of the problems, with a view to informing a decision about whether a fixed CCTV camera would be beneficial.

Residents are being encouraged to take part in a survey, which has been set up by Gough & Kelly. It can be accessed at  https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/TH7XT3Q

 

Woodthorpe residents encouraged to have their say on CCTV plans

Local Lib Dem councillors are encouraging residents to have their say on plans designed to tackle anti social behaviour in parts of Woodthorpe.

Example of a body-worn CCTV camera

Residents have expressed concern about vandalism and anti social behaviour in the Ashbourne Way and Summerfield Road area and also around the newly-refurbished playground at Woodthorpe Green.

In response, the Ward Budget is being used to fund a six-month trial of daily visits by a Gough & Kelly security patrol with body-worn cameras.

The aim is to gather evidence of the nature of the problems, with a view to informing a decision about whether a fixed CCTV camera would be beneficial.

The survey, which has been set up by Gough & Kelly, can be accessed at  https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/TH7XT3Q

The questions posed in the survey are:

  1. Do you feel there is a need for patrols with body-worn video in the Summerfield Road / Ashbourne Way area?
  2. Would having patrols make you feel safer?
  3. Are you happy that patrols have been considered as a way of documenting evidence to support the installation of a fixed CCTV camera?
  4. Are you happy for images of you to be recorded and stored for 31 days?
  5. Can you think of incidents where CCTV would have been useful in the area?
  6. Do you have any other comments, questions or concerns?

Burglary on The Horseshoe

A house burglary took place on The Horseshoe on Sunday 17th June between 12:30 and 5:30pm when an individual entered a property and took various items.


 

 

 

 

 

North Yorkshire Police are appealing to residents to contact them if they saw anything suspicious between these times and suspect it was related to this incident. Please phone 101 to pass any relevant information

Fewer Community Police in York

A response to a Freedom of Information  request has indicated that front line PCSO numbers have dropped by more than half in York since 2016.

PCSOs passing out in 2014

Liberal Democrat Councillor Ashley Mason, who is currently serving as the Vice Chair to the Police & Crime Panel, recently submitted a Freedom of Information request to North Yorkshire Police Force. He wanted to know the number of community police officers patrolling the streets of the City.

In response, Cllr Mason was told that there are currently 25 front line PCSOs in York.

This compares to 64 in 2016.

Cllr Mason had also requested the figures for the last 10 years, but unfortunately, was told that this information was not recorded.

This revelation comes amidst growing concerns that the fall in police numbers, due to Government cuts, has lead to increases in crimes throughout England. Although this has been denied by Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, a leaked report from her own department, has suggested reductions in police numbers were “likely” to have led to the increase.

Earlier this year, PCC Julia Mulligan promised to look into the neighbourhood policing system in York, after many local councillors expressed concerns about the lack of local officers in their communities.

Councillor Ashley Mason, Liberal Democrat and Vice Chair of the Police & Crime Panel:

“PCSOs are a vital link between the police and the communities they serve.  To loose so many over two years is shocking.”

“It is interesting to see that the Police and Crime Commissioner say that numbers high, which suggests that some PCSO’s are being taken away from the City of York.”

“I will be writing to the Police and Crime Commissioner to express my concerns and insist that her review of the force begin as soon as possible”

PCC Julia Mulligan has responded by saying that the North Yorkshire Police website, from which the figures in the FOI response were taken, was incorrect.

Councillor Ashley Mason responded by saying:

“I sent through a request to North Yorkshire Police for them to confirm to me the number of PCSOs working in York. I was a little surprised in the first instance when I was only referred to the North Yorkshire Police’s website, as the numbers indicated were low.

“I queried this with the force’s Civil Disclosure Unit and was again directed to North Yorkshire Police’s website, where I was told that the numbers of PCSOs could be found under the details of the ‘York North’ and ‘York City’ Neighbourhood Teams. As indicated on the website, only 25 PCSOs are detailed.

“If as the Police & Crime Commissioner has said that these numbers are incorrect, then this should be absolutely reflected on the North Yorkshire Police Force website, particularly if Councillors and members of the public are going to be directed to the website. Neighbourhood policing is extremely important to communities here in York and therefore, it is essential that information provided to the public is correct.”

Askham Bar flytipping investigated and goes to court

In August 2017 Cllr Stephen Fenton took a photo (below) of flytipping at the Askham Bar recycling banks and reported it to City of York Council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement team. They investigated, and a case went to the Magistrates Court on 2nd January. The defendant failed to attend and so the Court issued a warrant for the person’s arrest.


It’s good to know that these cases are pursued where evidence can be found. Flytipping can be reported to neo@york.gov.uk for investigation.

Neighbourhood policing in the spotlight

Local residents have expressed concern over the current condition of neighbourhood policing in York.

During a public meeting on local policing held on Tuesday, residents challenged the police and underlined their irritation at the current level of communication they receive from the police and their presence in the community.

Many communities have been left frustrated by the lack of communication and are often unaware of police activity in local areas.  Some residents highlighted the lack of police representation in the community as the main cause of the breakdown in communication between police and local people.

Deputy Chief Constable, Lisa Winward, stated that Neighbourhood policing was ‘the bedrock’ of policing in North Yorkshire Police and admitted that the police needed to be more organised and dedicate more time to local people.

It was also revealed that a neighbourhood policing survey will be launched next year to gather feedback from local people, with a view to improving overall neighbourhood policing.

Cllr Ashley Mason said:

“I am pleased that the meeting provided local residents the opportunity to communicate their concerns directly with senior officials in the police.

Every resident deserves to feel safe in their own community and when you begin to see less police in that community, the feeling of safety begins to diminish.

Neighbourhood policing is successful when local police officers build strong relationships with the communities they serve, however, local people are reporting that the police are no longer visible in the community.  This must be reversed.

It is important that the police take on board residents and I welcome Deputy Chief Constable Winward’s commitment to, once again, build those essential relationships with local communities.”

The public meeting on local policing was organised by Liberal Democrat Councillor, Cllr Ashley Mason, and attended by Deputy Chief Constable Lisa Winward, Superintendent Adam Thompson, Chief Inspector Charlotte Bloxham and members of the public.