Local Elections May 2nd 2019: Appearance Matters
Appearance matters so the Council says and in Folkestone Central ward, that statement is a load of rubbish.
Companies are upping and leaving due to drug dealing, prostitution, flytipping, graffiti and serious Anti Social Behaviour which you can report to the Council on 01303 853660. This number is answered during office hours (8.30am to 5.00pm from Monday to Friday excluding bank holidays). Out of Office Hours 01303 221888.
Ever since the opening of Payers Park the level of anti social behaviour has increased in and and around the area.
Report after report to the Police and the Council and has done little, if anything, to appease the issues which have so enraged tenants, and businesses alike in the Old High Street, Tontine Street and other areas nearby.
Many fine words have been spoken in rooms with the great and the good present, but over four years nothing has been done. Many good people have suffered. Their wellbeing, their finances both affected and a community which is on the edge of falling apart.
That is not said lightly either. Folkestone & Hythe Community Safety Partnership Partnership Plan 2017-18 states clearly at page 5 that:
All crime (in the district)) has increased by 18.3% and victim based crime up by 17.6%.
Then again in 2018/19 the Folkestone & Hythe Community Safety Partnership Partnership Plan states at page 5 that:
All crime (in the district) has increased by 23.1% and victim based crime up by 16.3%
I and countless others who live across the Folkestone Central ward and elsewhere have heard the Police say they can do little as they lack the resources. It doesn’t even matter if you have the evidence that drug dealing, prostitution and anti social behaviour are happening. It doesn’t matter if you share evidence with them. Still no action appears to be taken even though we’ were promised 200 new Police Officers for Kent in 2018 and another 180 in 2019 I’ve haven’t seen any – have you?
I have witnessed with my own eyes serious amounts of illicit white powders being sold in plain sight in the Old High Street in Folkestone. When the Police were informed I was told they had “other priorities” and lacked the resources to investigate.
Is it any wonder then why all crime has risen in the district in 2018/19 by 23.1% and victim based crime is up by 16.3%.
Folkestone Central ward is in the top 20% of most deprived wards (page 16) in England and in the top 10% of most deprived areas in Kent.
And according to Kent Live on April 1st 2019 Folkestone Central Ward has five out of the ten most dangerous streets in Folkestone. They are:
5 – St Eanswythe Way – Number of violent and sexual crimes reported: 31
4 – St John’s Street – Number of violent and sexual crimes reported: 31
3 – Clarence Street – Number of violent and sexual crimes reported: 42
2 – The Old High Street (Creative Quarter) Number of violent and sexual crimes reported: 46
1 – Shorncliffe Road – Number of violent and sexual crimes reported: 51
Back in 2014 DEFRA through its Local Environmental Quality Survey for England claimed that poor levels of cleanliness are also associated with increases in low-level crime and anti social disorder. How many little picks do we now have across the district in any one year? Do they prevent anti social behaviour or low level crime, certainly not. So the claim in 2014 seems as valid today, as it was then.
So what can be done? (And in no particular order)
Ask not what your district can do for you, Ask what you can do for your district to paraphrase JFK. Many of you clean our district, devote your time and energy to this district, and I, and no doubt many others are grateful and thankful to each of you for your efforts.
All bins across the district must have a dedicated telephone number stencilled on them and Veolia and the Council provide persons in an office who can be contacted about bins over the weekends so there is 7 day coverage. Please do remember the Contract for waste is up for renewal and such an idea can be built into the new contract and the contract is with Canterbury, Dover Folkestone & Hythe & Thanet District Councils so efficiencies and cost savings can be made.
What about the travellers that have moved into the C1 parking area at the back of marine crescent. I pay to park there how are they getting away with taking 20 parking spaces with no consequences?