‘Kingsway Youth Pod’ Category
I just received the latest Police Report for May 2010.
Statistics for Kingsway are remarkably similar to last year, as follows:
|Item / Details||April 2010||April 2009|
|Calls related to Public Disorder (April)||24||25|
According to the report, crime is down by 36% from April 1st – May 10th across the entire area covered by the Quedgeley Police Station.
The report also mentions the Kingsway Youth Pod and last Friday’s school leavers celebrations (two of my sons were there – lol).
It also mentions an imminent Police Community Panel meeting (I’m on the panel) which will – as always – help to set local community policing priorities; you can influence this by filling out a Community Police Report every time you witness a crime or public disorder incident.
Previous local Police reports can also be found on our Community Police Reports Page.
The latest Police SCT meeting took place on February 22nd.
On the same day, PC1706 Sam Jones started work as the new Local Beat Manager for Kingsway Village.
During the course of the meeting, we were informed of a recent public consultation undertaken by the Police; the results of the survey were as follows:
48 indicated no problem (that they couldn’t think of an issue for the police to tackle).
21 responses related to cars. However analysing these responses further, there was no pattern of location, or type of offence.
16 responses related to kids: Hanging around, large groups gathering, nothing for them to do, etc.
15 responses related to Anti-social behaviour (ASB). Again there was no specific location, or type of behaviour. Interestingly it didn’t all happen on Friday and Saturday nights!
6 responses were issues only one person raised. Where appropriate, these repondee’s were recontacted, or their concern passed to the relevant authority.
In conclusion, nearly half of people questioned couldn’t think of something for The Police to look at.
The questionaires were carried out at over 15 locations across the local Police beat area, chosen randomly, and took approximately 5 minutes each.
Locations included several in the Kingsway, and outside Tesco’s on a Saturday afternoon.
So, policing priorities remain the same:
1. To tackle Anti-Social Behaviour in Quedgeley, Hardwicke and Kingsway.
2. To tackle speeding motorists on Bristol Road, Green Lane and Pound Lane (all in Hardwicke).
In addition, Fraser Mackie has asked the traffic unit to increase the frequency of their patrols in Quedgeley’s area, and reported that they are planning a joint operation in the near future.
Fraser also reported that the Youth Pod will be arriving in Kingsway during the Easter School Holidays (April 12th) and (although not yet confirmed) the local youth service expect to have funding to open the pod for 3 nights per week.
For more information about the pod, contact Equals Youth Centre.
Last Friday (27th November) I attended two local meetings, as follows:
Police SCT Meeting
Complaints have been received from Kingway residents, regarding youths bullying younger children in the big park, and cars speeding on Woodvale and Thatcham Avenue. Both of these issues will receive close Police attention in the immediate future.
In addition, the Police are clamping down on local cyclists riding without lights. Spot fines will be issued and unsafe bikes may even be confiscated.
In January 2010, a new local "Beat Manager" – Sam Jones – will be joining PCSO Debbie Brimfield in Kingsway.
Sheila Golder (Equals Youth Centre) reported that planning permission has (finally) been received for placement of the Youth Pod in the car park at Kingsway Primary School. The pod is expected to be sited by February 2010 (half term) and will provide some badly needed facilities for local youths.
Residents Association Meeting
The first meeting since the new committee was formed was to have included elections for the committee, but since there were 10 places and only 10 volunteers, elections were not necessary.
The meeting minutes are available on our Residents Association Home Page.
On Friday 31st July, I took part in a Community Walkabout organised by PC Fraser Mackie, along with a group of people including Ismail Ali (Oxbode Housing), Cllr Elaine Emerton, Shane Clark (Kingsway resident and member of the Ambulance Service), Cllr Vic Rice, Cllr Andy Lewis, Marianne Crossman (Guiness Trust) and Joy Barham (Quedgeley News).
We covered a lot of issues (and a lot of ground). Here is the report received from Fraser today:
The aim of the activity was to identify how we, as people who hold responsibility in some way for the area, can improve the quality of life for those living in the Kingsway Village. This idea has been used succesfully in other areas, in particular nearby Podsmead. Those such as Councillors for the city and county have an elected mandate to represent the concerns of the residents living in the village. Others such as Clive Barton, run the Kingsway Village website, a popular forum for many residents views. It was unfortunate that a local Parish Councillor couldn’t attend, however, this was due to a reason of ill-health. For my own part, I am the Police Beat Manager for the village, and have to deal with the issues raised by residents when things have got out of hand. I have a vested interest in keeping the Queens peace in the village, and reducing the fear of crime as well as crime itself. I also need to be seen to be working for the residents in addressing their concerns.
I hope you agree we communicated a lot amongst ourselves, and can see some minor improvements that could be made easily and cheaply which could add to making a large difference. It was unfortunate that some could not make the event in order to add their opinion to the rest and give further guidance as to how things could improve. Thanks to those of you who couldn’t make it, yet let me know prior to this afternoon.
We met in the rear car park of Matalan, and progressed to the underpass. Here, Shane Clark (resident in the village and member of Great Western Ambulance Responders) pointed out some of the issues with the underpass itself. Holes in the roof obviously meant for lights are empty or covered over with board, but in some cases, wires can be seen hanging from the ceiling some 20 feet in the air. If used for their original purpose, they would leave the underpass much brighter, and less intimidating for people to use and get to the rest of Quedgeley.
There is graffitti on the walls but all agreed it was harmless enough, very un-obtrusive and would only be replaced with more should it be covered up. Mr LEWIS suggested getting in touch with Equals Youth Club to arrange for the walls to be covered in murals painted and designed by the local youth. I’m sure Sheila Golder, leader of Equals Youth Club, will be happy to help with your suggestion Mr Lewis, and she is expecting your call to arrange this.
Mr Clark stated he had tried various times to get someone to take authority or ownership of the bridge and the underpass, but on many occasions he has failed to get a satisfactory answer. It was decided that Mr Andy Lewis and Mr Vic Rice would speak with Mr Alastair Jewell of the builders consortium QUVL to establish once and for all who was maintaining the underpass, was it the Highways Agency, City or County Council, was it the builders QUVL? Who should residents turn to when wishing to speak to the right person about the underpass? Could you respond to all with the answer please?
Mr Clark also repeated his assertion that emergency vehicles were to be issued with the same transponders that allow the buses to pass through the gate un-obstructed. This hasn’t yet happened. I would agree that being able to use the underpass in emergency situations could be of great assistance to The Police, and I’m sure The Ambulance and Fire Brigade would agree. I’ve heard from others, not just Mr Clark, that this arrangement was part of the planning permission for the village. For the purposes of Quedgeley Police Station, we have 4 marked emergency vehicles, and would therefore require four of the devices which would allow us to use the bus gate in emergency conditions. Could Mr Jewell reply with where, and who we (Ambulance, Glos Fire and Police) can obtain these from?
It was also raised as to why there was resticted access through the underpass at all, why couldn’t everyone use the underpass as the buses do? Mr Lewis addressed this concern that the Severnvale roundabout was working at capacity already, additional traffic entering the roundabout from the Kingsway village would bring it to a standstill, and therefore wasn’t in anyone’s interests.
On moving away from the underpass and into the village along Valley Gardens it was noticed that a floatation ring was missing from the balancing pond next to the road. We believe it was located in the long grass next to Lyneham drive playpark. It was suggested by Mr Vic Rice that some kind of single-use device could be used to hold the ring in place, much like the ‘break glass to raise alarms’ that we are all use to inside our buildings. It would be tragic if one of these rings was required in an emergency , and wasn’t present when required.
Walking past Holbeach Road, Mr Clark pointed out that the signs displaying road names pose significant problems for emergency repsonders, those using blue lights to get to an emergency. Holbeach Road was used as an example. The road sign is set some way back from the junction. It can easily be obscured by cars parking in front of it. The road sign doesn’t give any indication that other, further roads lead off of it. There is only one sign, not one on either side of the road which is best practice, and done elsewhere in the village. They are manufactured from plastic, not aluminium, and so shatter when struck by a stone from passing cars. Incidentally, the signs will be required to be aluminium before the village can be adopted. Some of the road signs have been damaged, and not yet replaced, such as in Mildenhall Way and Valley Gardens. Valley Gardens is a particular problem because it is at the main cross-roads for the village. We therefore ask Mr Jewell if he can address these concerns in his reply?
A further issue raised by almost everyone present was the poor state of the pavement areas for pedestrians. From my own GCSE geography I learned about frost-thaw action, of how water gets into cracks, freezes during frosts, turns to ice, and will crack concrete, granite and tarmac given enough time. This frost-thaw action makes small cracks much, much larger. The pavements on Valley Gardens were full of little cracks and crevices for water to exploit, forming a loose surface on top. It’s this loose surface which many residents complained about, fearing it would lead to trips and falls. As the pavement surface hasn’t been finished, it has also left raised ironworks, drain covers for example, which may lead to trips and falls. Many of these pavements are now in areas were building has been completed, and no further building works neccesitates the digging up of pavements again. The pavements will need to be up to a certain standard before the village roads and pathways are adopted by The Council, which they currently don’t meet. Particularly in the area around the new and beautiful Kingsway Primary School, could these pavements not be topped off? I am aware that various politicians have raised this issue in the local press before, but as we head towards autumn of 2009 major areas haven’t improved. Mr Jewell, could you answer this query in your reply?
As we walked on through Valley Gardens, we noticed that the spring mechanism on the gate to the little play-park wasn’t in full working order. The gate appeared to be swinging in the wind. This safety device, designed to stop small children running out into the road should be replaced as soon as possible to avoid an accident. Again, this is down to the builders of the site who still maintain the facilities. But this is a another cheap fix to make, to make the area appear smarter and cared for.
It was noted as we walked around the village of the lack of facilities for youths in the village. We stopped by Kingsway Primary School, and discussed the siting of the Youth POD in the grounds of the school. As a small update on the current situation, a firm has been employed to arrange the lifting and moving of the Youth POD from its current position in the car park of Equals Youth Club to the school grounds. These builders were last seen taking measurements of the POD for this operation. We all wished Sheila Golder every success with this venture, and thank Headmistress Paula Needham and her school governors for their kind offer.
We then proceed to Lyneham Drive play-park. I pointed out the problems with the CCTV camera at the location, that in trying to obtain footage for a live criminal investigation was taking days and now weeks. A frequent complaint of residents to The Police, is who is watching the footage from these cameras, because they must be catching crimes in action, yet nothing seems to be done about the criminals.
It was raised that the grass designated as a play area for ball sports has grown particularly long, that appears not to have been cut for some time. Again, another small cost to make a difference to quality of life for those wanting to enjoy there summer holidays with regular games of football/cricket/rugby, and those wanting to enjoy the rest given by having somewhere for boys to burn off some energy! Another easy solution too.
I also show concern – and as of yet await any justified explanation – as to why the 300 yard plus stretch of all ready tarmacked and street lit road, unnamed but we shall call it the “Naas lane Link road” remains blocked off.
(Editors Note: See Woodvale Blockade).
This again affects Emergency Service response times dramatically to the village from the Purpose built Gloucester Tri-Emergency Centre which is only a stones throw away; road signage is in place by means of large costly aluminium signs so such a route was obviously meant to be opened to vehicular traffic but to date remains closed. (Shane Clark)?
As we returned to our starting location, we passed by a broken wall outside numbers 67 to 73 Woodvale. Broken for some time, it gives a bad impression for the village as potential home buyers enters the area, an impression that the area isn’t cared for as essential repairs aren’t being carried out. Through word of mouth, we have heard that an unknown driver created the hole, but that it can not be decided who should pay for repairs. Can anyone clarify this please?
Mr Clive Barton sent me further minor points he wished to add to this plan, but didn’t have time to add in the afternoon walk-round. I have lifted these concerns straight from his e-mail, and added them below.
1. Lamp Posts / Graffiti: It was mentioned that many of the lamp posts in Kingsway are now decorated with Graffiti. Although we didn’t see any obvious signs during the tour, I did notice some small signs of Graffitti on the Lamp Posts in Valley Gardens and Thatcham Avenue!
2. Chivenor Road: No Road sign at the Kinloss Drive end (I mentioned this before we parted).
3. Kinloss Drive: Tree (and fence) taken from “little roundabout” (to be honest it was right in the way for cars trying to drive ’round there anyway) but the ground is fast becoming a hole! (I also mentioned this before we parted).
4. The (black) railings on the corner of Woodvale/Thatcham have been sprayed with blue paint.
5. The lane that runs from halfway down Thatcham Avenue to the entrance to Copelands Park is becoming a favourite hangout for underage drinkers and the “Moped Menaces” are using it too!!
6. Shawbury Avenue: There’s a street light which has been out of action for more than 18 months! Local residents have paid to install additional lighting (on their houses – aimed at the street) because it was pitch black there in the evenings. Note: This was coomplained about some months ago, but the guy only gave me the road name this week. I identified the builder as Taylor Wimpey and rang their customer services, who have agreed to deal with it.
I will take on point 5 in this list myself, but all the rest appear not to be for The Police to deal with.
I again thank those of you who attended for your efforts. I am thankful that the weather held out for us. This exercise isn’t meant to be seen as a blame game, but used as a positive and constructive way of improving quality of life for those who live in the village. I hope it can be viewed as such by all.
PC 2125 Fraser MACKIE
Kingsway Village Beat Manager
In my article entitled Quedgeley Community Police posted April 16th, I said:
Fraser Mackie has kindly agreed to furnish us with future copies of the monthly Police Crime Reports for Kingsway, which will give us some insight into local crime and ASB statistics on an ongoing basis
Fraser has kindly supplied the reports for April and May 2009. They are available on the Community Police Reports Page (at the bottom of that page).
Amongst other interesting details the reports show that:
In February 2009, 18 crimes were recorded in Kingsway Village.
In March 2009, 15 crimes were recorded in Kingsway Village.
In April 2009, 15 crimes were recorded in Kingsway Village.
Calls relating to Public Disorder are also reported for the Quedgeley area over those same 3 months, but were only reported seperately for Kingsway during April when 25 such offences were recorded.
Other reported details include information about the Youth Pod, the Pubwatch Scheme, the "Large crime series of damage to vehicles", and more…
My thanks to Fraser Mackie and the team for supplying this information and for all their hard work and help in keeping Kingsway Village a safe and pleasant place to live.