Council aims to cut crime in Doncaster with new alley gates

Town ward Councillors Dave Shaw, John McHale and Sue Knowles, pictured by the alleyway between Beechfield Road and Apley Road, in Hyde Park, which has recently been fitted with gates. Picture: Marie Caley
Town ward Councillors Dave Shaw, John McHale and Sue Knowles, pictured by the alleyway between Beechfield Road and Apley Road, in Hyde Park, which has recently been fitted with gates. Picture: Marie Caley
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Doncaster Council plans to install more gates on the end of alleyways in an attempt to cut crime and fly-tipping.

lThe 7ft metal spike-topped gates have already been put up in several streets where the authority has identified problems, such as Hyde Park.

An alleyway off Jarratt Street, Hyde Park, which it is hoped will soon be fitted with gates. Picture: Marie Caley

An alleyway off Jarratt Street, Hyde Park, which it is hoped will soon be fitted with gates. Picture: Marie Caley

The gates, which can be opened and closed by residents, have so far proved successful, and the council has now applied to put in more gates.

Among the streets identified as problem areas are Jarratt Street and Carr House Road in Hyde Park, and Rockingham Road and Strafford Road in Wheatley.

The council’s director of regeneration Peter Dale said: “These proposals are made to respond to concerns raised by residents about fly tipping and general anti-social behaviour in alleyways.

“We are working with Neighbourhood Watch and residents to address issues that matter to them. Both proposals are extensions to existing schemes.

“The impact will be that alleys will be gated and residents will have greater control over who enters the alleys. They will have a dampening effect on bad behaviour and rubbish dumping.”

In Hyde Park, councillors say there has been an ongoing problem with fly-tpping in particular.

Coun Sue Knowles said it was often in areas with a ‘transient’ population where people were coming and going.

“They don’t have the same feeling of community and that the area belongs to them,” she added.

“We’ve got people who have been in the area for a long time and it’s their home, so they keep their houses and gardens nice. And there is resentment about people who don’t have that sort of attitude.”

Coun Knowles said the authority was trying to educate people about ‘appropriate’ behaviour.

But the problem still persisted, which is why the alley gates are needed.

She said: “Residents complain about fly-tipping, we clear it up and as fast as we do it, it appears again.

“At least the gates stop people coming in and dumping in someone else’s neighbourhood.”

Coun Knowles said she hoped the gates would also deter troublemakers from loitering in the alleys.

“Where there are alleys, people use them as a way of getting into the houses without it being visible,” she said.

“In some areas where we have had alley gates put in, there had been problems with prostitutes and drug users, such as Town Moor.

“There are all sorts of reasons why people would want their alleys blocked off.”

The council does not have the money to block off every alleyway, said Coun Knowles.

But there are pots of money available.

“If they are prepared to form a residents’ group then they can go for money that often we can’t,” she added.