Last week, I held my first virtual public meeting for local residents to discuss with me the problems they have been experiencing with anti-social behaviour, car racing and law-breaking at Cortonwood Retail Park and on the Dearne Valley Parkway.
The meeting was well attended and we were also joined by South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Dr Alan Billings, Brampton Parish Council clerk Colin Earl, PC Claire Jennings and local councillors for Brampton Brian Steele and David Roche.
Following this virtual meeting, I have now sent out an update to those who attended and you can also read my update below.
Cortonwood Retail Park & Dearne Valley Parkway Update
The main points discussed were:
- Drivers are meeting at the car parks at Morrisons and the back of B&Q because barriers are not being closed
- The noise disturbance goes on until the early hours of the morning and this is having an impact on residents’ sleep and mental health
- Several residents thought speed cameras would be a good idea
- Car meets have an impact on business because people are worried about using the restaurants at Cortonwood
The view of police is that problems at the retail park and on the Parkway are connected and need to be dealt with together and a long-term solution found.
Following our virtual meeting, a further meeting was held this week to discuss the problem and solutions involving the police, Barnsley Council and Rotherham Council. It has been agreed that there will be a joint approach involving the two councils and police from Barnsley and Rotherham as well as traffic officers. In addition, a group has now been created within South Yorkshire Police that will work together on the problem, overcoming geographical and departmental problems.
Some of the actions agreed on are:
- Police will continue to call on traffic police for support
- Councils are to consider the use of a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO)
- Barnsley Council is to look at carrying out a speed monitoring survey and consider sound barriers and other traffic measures
- Police are putting a case together to bid for speed cameras
This commitment to working together is a positive step forward. I continue to work closely with police and the councils to press for problems at Cortonwood and the Parkway to be dealt with as a priority, and to support the work they’re doing wherever I can.
I have scheduled a meeting with Savills, the agents for Cortonwood Retail Park, in a few days. I have also been on to Morrisons about their gates not being closed.
The strong message from police at the meeting, and they have repeated this to me afterwards, is that people should continue to report incidents and that doing so helps build evidence and make the case for further measures, such as a PSPO.
You can report by phone to 101 or online: https://www.reportingcrime.uk/
You can also report directly to the Rotherham North neighbourhood policing team: https://www.southyorks.police.uk/find-out/your-neighbourhood-policing-team/rotherham-north/