Stabbing shines light on estate’s problems

Stabbing shines light on estate’s problems

By Gareth Dennison | 30/07/2021

Stabbing shines light on estate’s problems


Antony Mark Thompson said the incident in which a 39-year-old man was injured at the Wharncliffe flats brought the area’s issues to light.

Mr Thompson, of Carlisle Place, said he had witnessed a big increase in crime over the past few years on the estate.

“This is happening on a regular basis now at Wharncliffe,” said Mr Thompson (58).

“We have a massive problem with drugs, and it’s been really bad for three years.

“Police turn up, but they just end up moving the drugs around. It shifts to different houses. I feel like we can’t get any help.

“We are having to live with this 24/7. There’s houses boarded up, houses broken into. It’s not nice for us.”

He added: “I used to go to community meetings, with councillors and community co-ordinators. That doesn’t happen now.

“These community meetings have gone with the pandemic. It feels like they don’t care about us any more.

“Other than seeing police after the stabbing, I’ve not even seen a PCSO for six or seven weeks. Even then, it’s that they’re just passing through.

“I do bits on the gardens, I report lights that are out but it can take months for that sort of thing to get fixed.”

Police attended the stabbing on the morning of July 8 at Spring Walk. One teen was charged and two others bailed in connection with this and a linked incident on High Street the previous evening.

Paul Walsh, RMBC’s acting housing director, said: “I can fully appreciate that the incident will have caused alarm to some residents on the estate and the wider community.
“Housing officers have been providing reassurance visits in the area and are continuing to liaise with police.

“With regard to the general maintenance of the area, the council’s estate caretaking team visit the estate to undertake general duties such as litter picking, removal of fly-tipping and maintenance of communal areas regularly.

“The team work closely with housing officers to ensure that any issues of concern are reported so that appropriate action can be taken.”

South Yorkshire Police said community group meetings were still taking place but currently still online because of the pandemic.

A spokesperson added: “Following recent reports of violence and anti-social behaviour in the Wharncliffe area, the local neighbourhood policing team have conducted additional patrols with partner agencies to respond to reports of criminal behaviour.
“In addition to this, officers have successfully executed warrants under the misuse of drugs act to target and disrupt criminality in the area.
“If you think you can help us identify those involved in criminal activity, it’s essential you come forward and tell us what you know.
“We rely on the continued support from the public and will continue to do all we can to protect our local communities in Rotherham.

“If you would like to report an offence, but would rather remain completely anonymous, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”


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