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Nechells Neighbourhood Tasking Group 15 January 2013 at 1400 hours Carol Gethins House, Arthur Street, Small Heath West Midlands Police Sgt Dave Bates – in the Chair (DB) PC Aninder Kaur- Digbeth NHT West Midlands Fire Service Mark Clifton (MCl) Paul Johnson (PJ) Noran Flynn Mark Crooke (MC) – Friends of Sara Park John Gordon (JG) Kay Thomas (KT), Gary Bullock (GB), Gary James (GJ), Russell Davey (RD), Eddie Howard (EH)– Highgate HLB Action WELCOME & INTRODUCTIONS Introductions were made and the Chair welcomed all to the meeting. Birmingham City Council Alex Warsama (AW)
Agenda Item 1.
NOTES OF LAST MEETING The notes of the previous meeting were agreed. Any issues arising from the notes would be picked up during the meeting.
PARTNER UPDATES/ PERFORMANCE PJ provided figures on behalf of the fire service and stated that most of the 3 year trends were positive. Accidental fires were up slightly but the Fire Service will follow up with businesses and provide advice to them. There were no links in any of the fires reported. The number of Arson fires had decreased with arson vehicle fires down by 19%. Arson derelict buildings are also showing lower figures. Arson rubbish fires were high compared to the 3 year trend but all tended to be minor in nature. The Fire service are conducting preventative work, with the pedal bike teams doing rubbish referrals to the council. AW stated that there would be benefits in doing joint work between the council asb housing team and the fire service to identify repeat offenders. AW and PJ agreed to discuss this further and provide an update for the next meeting amount potential joint working.
The chair provided the following crime figures: Ladywood East which included both Aston and Nechells Wards Total crime Month to Date -14.9% 37 fewer victims Year to Date -20.3% 1291 fewer victims
Robbery Month to Date -18.2% 2 fewer victims Year to Date -30.7% 126 fewer victims Vehicle Crime Month to Date -8.5% 4 fewer victims Year to Date -23.1% 273 fewer victims Burglary Dwelling Month to Date +35.7% 5 additional victims Year to Date -7.1% 20 fewer victims DB stated that the rise in burglaries for the month was disappointing but that the increase had been on the Aston rather than Nechells Wards. Digbeth and Small Heath neighbourhoods were showing 0% change on last year whilst Nechells neighbourhood had a 66.7% reduction. JG stated that whilst it was helpful to have the figures it would be more useful if a handout could be provided to the group detailing the exact period being covered and the area of offending. DB stated that this would not be a problem and he could provide figures in that format for the next meeting. Drug Offences The following figures were reported since the last meeting; Small Heath – 4 offences of possession of cannabis 1 of Class A Digbeth – 10 cannabis offences & 3 class A drug offences Nechells – 4 cannabis offences and 2 class A. ___________________________________________________________ 4. NECHELLS a) Action Updates Boy Racers – DB advised the there had been no issues relating to the boy racers since the last meeting and very few, if any, had been present on Sunday nights. Because of the lack of numbers the Council had not used their barriers to reduce the carriageway to one lane on Heartlands Parkway in order to conserve the funding until the weather improved and they were more likely to return. The prosecutions were continuing to progress through the magistrates court and the neighbourhood teams would continue to monitor the issue. Agreed to remain on the minutes whilst the prosecutions continued. Crime Safety – NF stated that she had been in contact with the fire service and they had provided relevant fire safety information which had been gratefully received. Nechells Parkway, children throwing stones at vehicles – Regarding the previous action for Sgt Khan (AK) to liaise with John Street (JS) regarding his disappointment that he had not been contacted regarding diversionary activities for the young people who had been warned about throwing stones on Nechells Parkway the Chair stated that AK had now changed teams and he had not received an update from JS or AK. Paul Bieliauskas (PB) had
taken over from AK. As neither were present action to be carried over to next meeting. Youth Facilities in Nechells No update had been received from Kalsoom Zubedah-Khan (KZK) regarding the numbers of young people attending the youth diversion schemes in Nechells and the action was carried over. Similarly no update had been received regarding EH and KZK sharing details regarding St Martins Youth Club and what assistance the council might be able to give to keep it open. Action carried over as neither member in attendance. Youth Crime Figures The Chair advised that in relation to JS query as to whether there had been a rise in youth crime in relation to the reduction of youth service provision in the area that it was very difficult to provide accurate figures on youth crime. It was only possible to provide figures when people were arrested or were named as an offender and there age was known. This would not capture the picture for the majority of offences. NF asked if figures were available regarding the numbers of young people becoming victims of crime as many crimes against young people were committed by other young people. The chair stated that he would explore this for the next meeting. Robberies – Heartlands School The Chair had not received an update regarding the two pupils from Heartlands school from AK but NF had received an update from the Nechells team and was aware that arrests had been made. The chair undertook to find out what the outcome had been from PB. b) New Issues The Chair reported that there had been a number of thefts from motor vehicles around the Lichfield Road but that these were now reducing. 5. SMALL HEATH a) Action Updates Environmental Issues The Chair stated that he had spoken to RD for an update regarding the further bag searches to be undertaken along the Coventry Road. RD had updated that it was taking longer than anticipated as members of the public had expressed concern that bags were being searched and that they were being ‘spied on’. Because of this it had been decided to remove the bags and search them at another location which was taking longer. RD had updated the Chair that the results should be known for the next meeting. Chair agreed to carry over the action.
MC stated that there were wider issues around waste management with residential collections being missed. The Chair stated that these would best be dealt with at the ward meeting that that KT may be able to raise them if MC could not attend.
Pritchett Tower MC reported that there had been no significant issues in the block since the last meeting and that matters had improved following the closure of a flat on the ground floor. MC asked whether the closure notices on that address needed to be displayed as it advertised that it was vacant and might result in it being broken into. AW advised that it was a legal requirement for the notices to be displayed. MC stated that a group of youths was still congregating on the 18th and 19th floors periodically and causing a nuisance. The Chair stated that there had been no crimes reported in the block since the 1st December and only 2 incident logs, one of which related to a fraud matter and another was a child playing with the phone. The Chair proposed that as the cctv camera outside the block was now working and the flat associated with some of the asb had been closed that the matter be removed from the document. He gave reassurance that general patrols would still be made. MC agreed that the issue should be removed. Group of Youths, Bordesley Green – Criminal Damage The Chair stated that since the last meeting the number of offences had reduced and that beside one offence on 15th Jan there had not been an incident since the 2nd Dec. Joint patrols had been conducted with the Safer Travel Team and 2 unrelated arrests had been made on that day. It was decided for the matter to remain for monitoring for another month with DB to update at the next meeting. Sandfields Avenue – Garage Site The Chair advised that no responses had been received following the police letter drop. Patrols had continued and no suspicious activity had been detected. Matter to be removed. Boulton Road Shop The Chair advised that no further intelligence had been received linking the shop to criminal activity and no residents had raised the matter at the local police meeting. The shop itself had been the subject of a burglary in which cigarettes had been stolen. At this stage there was no evidence to link the premises to criminal activity and the matter would be removed. Talfourd Street, Cosmos Club – The Chair stated that patrols had been continuing in the area and there still appeared to be a number of individuals and vehicles linked to drug dealing in the vicinity of the premises. A meeting was being arranged with the owner of the club and the police and Council ASB team to discuss the issues. The chair also advised that £1000 of Perceptions of
Safety funding had been secured, facilitated by Amelia Murray, for the Talfourd St and Bordesley Green area. £400 of this money would fund extra patrols, £200 would be spent on crime prevention materials and £400 for environmental improvements. The Chair stated that a walk-around would take place to identify the best use for the money and he would provide an update at the next meeting. MC suggested that the group could conduct a local walkabout 3-4 times a year so that issues could be seen at first hand and then addressed. The chair agreed to consider this for the future. b) New Issues Business robberies Coventry Road The chair advised that there had been several business robberies along the Coventry Road during December and January. These included Morrison’s petrol station, two bookmakers, Lloyds TSB bank and the Halal Supermarket. He advised that 3 males had been arrested in relation to one of the robberies at the bookmakers and were currently on remand but they were not likely to have been responsible for all of the offences. The Small Heath Neighbourhood Team were looking at setting up a business watch scheme along the Coventry Road. The Chair undertook to update the group at the next meeting. MC raised concerns that PCSOs had been posted on static points on the retail park and Coventry Road and that this could undermine their wider community role. The chair responded that they had only been posted to static points in the week before Christmas because of the number of shoppers in the area and their potential vulnerability to other crimes as well as the thefts from shops. The Chair agreed that the PCSOs should not be a replacement for store security staff but that they did have an obligation to protect the businesses from crime. 6. DIGBETH/ HIGHGATE a) Action Updates Horton Square – The all out day had been completed and was attended by Police, BCC Housing department, BCC ASB Team, BCC Parking Enforcement Team, BCC Environmental Health Officers, BCC Saferpartnership Officers, BCC Waste Managment Team, Youth Offending Team, BCC Catetakers, Staff from Chandos Primary School and 2 Residents. There were 8 parking notices issued, and every business was visited by wardens also Housing officers attended every property. A letter drop was completed reminding residents how to dispose of rubbish and useful contact numbers provided. All of the rubbish was removed from the area and the bins were empted. The area was left clean and tidy and the local businesses were very supportive. MC stated that parking remained an issue in the Square and whilst the day of action was clearly positive it would not solve the problem. The Chair undertook to liaise with Sgt Snape (PS) from the Digbeth team to liaise with parking enforcement to monitor the issue. Shawbury Grove – The Chair stated that 5 warning letters had
been issued in conjunction with the Birmingham Safety Partnership and ASB contracts would be used if further problems continued. Matter would remain on the document for monitoring. Hanwood House, Hostel – Enquiries had been made regarding the reported drunken asb issues. Two persons had been identified who had been causing the problems whilst visiting a resident at the hostel. That resident had recently died and the persons were no longer visiting and had left the area. The hostel had strict policies on alcohol and there had been no further problems. Mugging – Gooch Street An arrest had been made in relation to this incident and a male was currently on remand having been charged with the offence. b) New Issues Burglary Reassurance JG stated that there had been some community concern regarding a rise in burglary dwelling offences in the area. He was aware that a person may have been arrested and that the offences had reduced but asked if some reassurance could be given to the wider community to make them aware of this as people remained concerned. The Chair agreed to speak to PS to discuss a potential letter drop around the Abacus building. St Patrick’s Day Update JG stated that he had requested at a meeting last year from Insp Dagnan to see the review that the police had made into the policing of the St Patrick’s Day Parade in 2012. He had still not received this and asked if the findings or the document could be made available to him as this year’s parade was approaching. The Chair undertook to look into the matter. 7. COMMUNITY PRIORITES The following priorities were agreed; 8. OTHER URGENT BUSINESS No Matters Raised Boy Racers (Nechells) Environmental Issues (Small Heath) Illegal Parking around Horton Square (Highgate)
Date of Next Meeting It was agreed to hold the next meeting on 19 February 2013 at 2pm. Venue to be confirmed.
Meeting ended 3.45pm
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