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'People are scared to put lights on at night' - Survey's shocking results on Wrexham anti-social issues

Published date: 13 July 2017 |
Published by: Steve Craddock 
Read more articles by Steve Craddock  Email reporter


AN ACCOUNTANCY firm which launched a survey to improve Wrexham’s anti-social behaviour issues has received ‘horror stories’ in response.

Morag Browning, director of MD Coxey and Co on Grosvenor Road, started sending out surveys to nearby businesses and residents almost two weeks ago asking them to share how they had been affected by homeless people and anti-social behaviour.

In a covering letter to recipients, she explained MD Coxey aims to collate the responses and make representations to Wrexham Council, and other bodies, in order to improve the situation and ‘ensure the community of Wrexham is not adversely affected’.

The survey asks participants to confirm whether they have been affected by a number of types of behaviour, including threatening behaviour to staff, anti-social behaviour by people under the influence of drugs, theft of property, evidence of rough sleeping and the sale or public use of drugs.

Yesterday, Ms Browning told the Leader her company had so far received more than 50 responses – many of which contained ‘upsetting’ accounts, adding: “It has been horrendous the last few months.

“We’re having incidents every day and we’ve had to put CCTV in to protect staff and clients.

“We’re doing this so we can have some firm evidence to approach the council.

“There are some horror stories in the questionnaires and many have asked for them to be confidential because they are scared of being identified.

“Everyone is having problems. There are people living near these businesses who are scared to put their lights on at night. It is not good, it has to be stopped, businesses will move out of Wrexham.

“It seems there is about a dozen organisations working with them and it is creating a perfect storm in town.

“We have lost clients - they are scared to come to Wrexham because they land at the bus stop and they have to walk past them.

“I think the only thing to do is move them out of the centre of the town and I am not the only person who thinks this is the solution.”

In the letter, she also states: “There has been adverse publicity regarding the situation in Wrexham in the national media as well as in the local news.

“Better supervision, help and understanding of the persons causing the anti-social behaviour and nuisance is absolutely essential to reduce the effect on the Grosvenor Road neighbourhood.”

Morag Browning also met with Wrexham MP Ian Lucas over the issue.

Mr Lucas said: “I met with the group at the start of their campaign and their frustrations were clear.

“I think that it is very important that those who set priorities for tackling this sort of behaviour understand how this issue is affecting people and businesses in Wrexham.

”I have been speaking with the council already, and have raised the issue in Parliament as a result and invited ministers to Wrexham to see the issue on the ground.

“I think it is important that people who make decisions on this issue meet with the people who those decisions affect – I have said so to the council, to Government – and to North Wales’ Police and Crime Commissioner too.

“I do not think that the Police and Crime Commissioner is giving this issue the attention it deserves.”

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