‘People need to feel safe’... Call for meeting after rise in antisocial behaviour in Southwater

JPCT 220212 Lintot Square, Southwater. Photo by Derek Martin ENGSUS00120120227103756
JPCT 220212 Lintot Square, Southwater. Photo by Derek Martin ENGSUS00120120227103756

More calls have been made for a meeting to tackle the rise in antisocial behaviour in Southwater.

Horsham District councillor Billy Greening, (con, Southwater), has raised concerns about the growing issue after receiving multiple messages from residents saying they no longer felt safe in the village.

Following a 20 man brawl in Lintot Square at the end of August Mr Greening sent a letter to Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne urging her to take part in a meeting so they could ‘nip the problem in the bud’.

In the letter, which was also posted on his Facebook page, he said the incident was the ‘straw that broke the camel’s back’.

Speaking to the County Times he said: “People in Southwtaer need to feel safe. There are a lot of people who have been writing to me saying they feel rather vulnerable and scared to go out which is quite shocking in Southwater.

“People in Southwater should be able to enjoy the village without the worry of antisocial behaviour.”

Ms Bourne said she was arranging a date to speak to Mr Greening but Southwater was not the only place experiencing a rise in these types of crimes, with Sussex as a whole seeing a seven per cent increase in antisocial behaviour.

She said: “I always welcome the opportunity to meet with residents, councillors and community groups across Sussex to hear their concerns and to represent their views and issues directly to the Chief Constable.

“My office has received a number of concerns from residents, communities and businesses regarding the recorded number of anti-social behaviour crimes which increased by seven per cent from September 2016 to August 2017 compared to the same period the previous year.

“I have written to Cllr Billy Greening and am currently arranging a date to speak to his colleagues.

“Keeping our communities safe and strengthening local policing remains a key priority for me.”

Mr Greening said he wanted everyone in the village to tackle this problem and wanted a resolution which would ‘empower’ residents.

He said: “We can’t tackle it as individuals we need to tackle it as a team, that’s Horsham District Council working with the local parish council, working with the community, we need to be together.

“The police do a fantastic job, the problem lies solely with the young people committing the antisocial behaviour.”

Ms Bourne will be addressing the issues of anti-social behaviour at a Performance and Accountability Meeting tomorrow (Friday September 15).

To watch the meeting visit www.sussex-pcc.public-i.tv/core/portal/home) and ask residents to continue raising their concerns with me.