Archive for the 'Littering/Vandalism/Crime' Category Page 2 of 5



COUNCILLORS THREATEN PROSECUTION FOR DUMPING AT RAILWAY

Councillors Cadogan Enright and Robert Burgess are threatening prosecutions on people who park up at Down Railway in the evenings and throw out fast food wrappings and drink cartons at one of Downs premier tourist attractions.

Railway director Neil Hamilton (left) with Cllrs Cadogan Enright and Robert Burgess

Railway director Neil Hamilton (left) with Cllrs Cadogan Enright and Robert Burgess

Cllr Burgess said “This problem is reaching epidemic proportions, and even though this area is cleaned in the mornings, it is back dirty again by evening. Down Railway is one of our key Tourist attractions and is being expanded and improved with help from the Council and other agencies.”

Cllr Enright agreed and said “Dumpers need to beware from now on. This location is now not only on the list for random checking on a daily basis by our enforcement officers, but will also be the subject of joint night-time patrols and monitoring by the PSNI and Environmental officers. Offenders will expect to pay £80 as a minimum, and prosecution though the court is also open to us. This dumping is going to stop.”

“There is going to be a crack-down”, said Cllr Burgess, “offenders will not be hard to trace as we will have their car registration numbers, so I would urge anyone who is thinking of driving into Downpatrick for a takeaway – to keep their rubbish until they get home or use one of the many Council-provided bins around the town”.

The Council, railway volunteers, the lottery and many government agencies have worked to deliver what is N.Irelands only working heritage railway. It has greatly expanded in the last year, with a huge new carriage museum, workshops and is in the throes of re-laying much of its existing tracks before its next big event on St Patricks day. This will make room for rapid expansion at a later date. A new entrance area is also being constructed to what is a working museum, and one of the jewels of Downpatrick.

Both Councillors help out at the railway on a volunteer basis, they invited people of all ages to volunteer – saying that there are a wide range of skills required from manual labour, operating heavy machinery, carpentry, engineering, administration, on the internet and in the museums and shop. There are 13 different teams of people working away throughout the week, and there were roles for people of every age and ability. See www.downrail.co.uk/join.htm

Successful End to Campaign to stop repeated felling of Trees in Malone and New Bridge Street

A successful conclusion seems to have been brought to 4-year campaign by residents of New Bridge Street and Malone to protect the forest overlooking the Belfast roundabout in Downpatrick.

Action Taken Against Felling of Trees in New Bridge Street

Action Taken Against Felling of Trees in New Bridge Street

Cllr Cadogan Enright confirmed to the Down Recorder that he had written to the Chair of the NIHE Board on behalf of the residents of New Bridge Street to protest the failure of local NIHE management to prosecute those responsible for cutting down or damaging trees over several years despite local residents being willing to give evidence to the PSNI.

Cllr Enright said “We have fought hard to stop these forests from being chopped down. They are a vital local resource, an oasis of wildlife including a much-loved family of red squirrels and a delight to behold as you drive into Downpatrick from Belfast.”

“Over the last four years the NIHE repeatedly reassured that if we got the name of those involved, the Housing Executive would take action.  We finally caught a culprit, and took his registration number. Thanks to PSNI community policeman Sgt McKenna taking action to trace the car-number we wrote down, we discovered that the tree-surgeon works for the housing executive.” Said Cadogan Enright.

“I asked for the Chair of the Housing Executive to intervene with local management, and ensure action against persons who have been cutting down our trees these last 4 years on repeated occasions, costing £8000 to the NIHE for replacement trees on one occasion alone. If no action is ever taken against any person on this issue, no deterrence will exist against future vandalism.”

The Chief Executive has now replied saying “It transpired that a private resident had paid the Housing Executive’s tree surgery contractor to undertake this work.  The contractor was challenged on this matter and he gave his assurance that this was a one–off occurrence.  The contractor is no longer employed by us and, having sought legal advice, it was decided that it would not be in the best interest of the Housing Executive to pursue this any further as the damage was minimal and we might lose the case if it went to court.  We did however confront the private resident and made it clear that this was unacceptable.”

“Last year we read in The Down Recorder how the Housing Executive was not able to prosecute any one of hundreds of cases of trees being cut down in this area. Possible reasons are now emerging with this case. I am still not satisfied that NIHE has acted correctly. They should have written to the PSNI confirming that they had not given permission for the trees to be cut down, and thus allowed the PSNI to take action in this case.” concluded Cllr Cadogan Enright

WARNING OVER SCADDY ROAD SPEEDING

Councilor Cadogan Enright and local community PSNI officers have been meeting residents of the Turmennan Road, Scaddy Road and Greystown Road areas over concerns about cars speeding through the area between the A7 Belfast road and The Old Belfast Road.

Cllr Cadogan Enright with PSNI offer Owens at Scaddy Road - Greystown Road cross Roads

Cllr Cadogan Enright with PSNI offer Owens at Scaddy Road - Greystown Road cross RCouncilor Cadogan Enright and local community PSNI officers have been meeting residents of the Turmennan Road, Scaddy Road and Greystown Road areas over concerns about cars speeding through the area between the A7 Belfast road and The Old Belfast Road.

Cllr Enright said, “The situation had been made worse by recent road closures on both main roads and the ongoing pipe-laying along Craigs Road by the water service that will last up until July. There seems to be little coordination between the Roads Service and NIWater as to diversions or reduced speed limits though these country lanes. Having spoken to Roads Service, they have not given proper consideration to applying temporary speed limits in these areas, and are leaving it to the PSNI to pick up the pieces, but without giving the PSNI a temporary speed limit to work with.”

Local resident Olwen McConnell said “the national speed limit of 60 miles per hour is totally inappropriate for winding single-lane roads like this. 25 or 30MPH would be more appropriate, and even then care is needed as there are no pavements and children, horses and agricultural traffic must be expected at every turn in this area ”

Cadogan Enright agreed and said, “The PSNI have made it clear to me that ‘driving with due care and attention’ requires drivers to proceed at well below the national speed limit, and that they will be monitoring the situation. Aside from winding, narrow sections of these 3 roads, there are some sections where the rise of a hill, like the hill on Scaddy Road makes it impossible to see what is coming on the other side. A child with a bike or someone out on a horse would have no chance at these speeds.”

“I am pleased that the PSNI have decided to put in place their own measures to reduce speeding along Scaddy Road, including electronic speed indicator boards, despite the failure of Roads Service to agree temporary speed restrictions for the duration of these works”.  Concluded Cll Enright

Cllr Enright wins right to review new PSNI station plans – finds no custody suite and no access for local knocknashinna bus 12th dec 2012

Cllr Enright wins right to review new PSNI station plans – finds no custody suite and no access for local knocknashinna bus 12th dec 2012

Fury over charges August 2012

Ex farmers leader loses high court case

Ardglass Arson 19th Sept 2012

Cllr Cadogan Enright attacks arsonists in Ardglass

Ardglass Arson 19th September 2012

Cllr Cadogan Enright attacks arsonists in Ardglass

COUNCILLOR CONDEMNS RECKLESS ACT OF VANDALISM IN ARDGLASS

Down Councilor Cadogan Enright has condemned an act of vandalism in Ardglass which could have turned into a deadly fireball with potential loss of life.

Local youths ‘pumped up’ on a lethal cocktail of illegal drugs and alcohol set fire to £30,000 worth of fishing equipment in the harbor area of Ardglass, close to an oil storage facility on Sunday night.

Councillor Enright said: ‘This act of wanton destruction had potential to spread and only the sheer hard work of the local firefighters who raced out from Downpatrick did we avert disaster on a large scale’.

‘The proximity of the fish boxes, which were being stored by a local fisherman, to the oil facility posed a real threat to life and property. I suspect considerable pollution entered the harbor from the hundreds of melting fish boxes dripping over the harbor edge’, he added.

Councillor Enright also expressed sadness at the environmental impact of such a large fire.

‘The lorries and boxes set on fire dispersed into the water and this coupled with thick, acrid smoke meant Ardglass was exposed to a significant environmental threat at the weekend’, he said.

Councillor Enright has also expressed dismay with the continuing anti social behavior problem in Ardglass.

Cllr Cadogan Enright holding vodka bottle, with burnt shipping containers from whence hundred of fish boxes were set alight

Cllr Cadogan Enright holding vodka bottle, with burnt shipping containers from whence hundred of fish boxes were set alight

‘There were reports on Sunday night of the local youths involved in this fire taunting the PSNI at the scene. Action needs to be taken to stop any such incident occurring again. The fishing trade is in hard enough times without vandalism adding to costs incurred’, Councillor Enright added.

Councillor Enright expressed hope that the Ardglass Village Committee is re-started and that the policing partnership examines the issues involved, especially the source of drugs and drinks being purchased by what is a small group of young people. This is causing distress to the vast majority of law abiding residents, young and old in what is an idyllic Irish fishing village’

Fire at Pound Lane Sunday 14th October 2012

Cadogan Enright observing fire at Pound Lane Clinic Sunday 14th October 2012Sunday’s fire was the sixth I have witnessed in the immediate vicinity of the old A/E in Downpatrick in about 8 months on Health Trust property. It is to be hoped that the subsequent arrests may result in an end to this problem that is adding to the dereliction at the centre of the town.
I was astonished that there seemed to be no fire hydrants at the old hospital, and the water had to be brought up from Irish Street and St Dillons Avenue. This time the fire had been set more thoroughly and the fire swept out of control and filled the skies over Downpatrick with dark smoke.
When I think how hard people of all parties in Downpatrick have worked to develop the new Downshire Public Sector Campus, its a crying shame that the centre of the town has to suffer in this way. When prospective public sector tenants drive up to the new Campus, they must pass a swathe of dereliction stretching from John Street and St Patrick’s Avenue all the way over to the Ardglass Road.
This is debilitating the town, and when added to the unresolved issues of congestion around the town adds up to a mounting emergency that has to be dealt with. The South Eastern Trust needs to explain why it is contributing the biggest share to all of this. Poor property planning, failing to deliver on its share of the new junctions needed to make the campus successful and reduce congestion and failing to deliver on a regular bus service up to the new campus.
It is unlikely such a situation would be permitted to develop in any other part of the South Eastern Trust area. This is a failure of stewardship of public property, failure as a landlord and failure to deliver to the citizens of this area. This issue must be the priority of the new cross-party working group set up by Downpatrick Councillors to tackle congestion around the town and the retention and growth of public sector jobs in the area.

Forcing action from the PSNI over theft and vandalism at YMCA in Newcastle – June 2011

Cllr Enright with staff at the YMCA

Cllr Enright with staff at the YMCA looking at burnt furniture from the centre

I was called out to the YMCA in Newcastle by staff who were quite shocked at the reaction of the PSNI to a break-in at the centre.

Staff laptops and ‘phones were stolen by an identifiable group of people you also stole furniture to break up and burn while camping without permission and engaging in a raucous drinking party on the site.

Police were called, no arrests were made, no attempt was made to recover the PC’s and phones of volunteer YMCA staff that had come from the USA to help look after the young people using the YMCA facilities.

Mild rebukes were given out and no names were taken. This followed the previous weekend where  a similar rampage though a caravan park in Newcastle resulted in none of those involved being charged.

As a member of the Policing Partnership, I contacted the police to demand action, and when none was forthcoming I contacted the duty Inspector, and when that did no good I finally contacted Commander Deirdre Bones, and finally CID and other police action belatedly arrived on the scence 48 hours later.

While the response after contacting the commander was good, policing in Down District cannot depend on Councillors like myself being forced to contact the police commander.

Theft of laptops, phones or taking furniture out of peoples houses for bonfires clearly should result in immediate arrest.

There is a huge fear amongst people across Down District that the loss of holding cells in Downpatrick is going to result in grave situations like this not resulting in arrests or investigation as police are reluctant to strip local cover while taking criminals to holding cells in Belfast or Bangor.