13th Aug, 2020

Safety fears after drugs kit found near play area in Redditch

Imogen Buller 19th Jan, 2018

USED needles, syringes and drugs wrappers were all found by one diligent Redditch dog-walker this week – just yards from a childrens’ play area.

Sarah Barrass, who lives in Riverside, was out walking her dog in Sunningdale Close at about 10am on Monday when she spotted a needle under a lamp-post.

After scooping up her dog so she wouldn’t get hurt, the concerned resident discovered more drug paraphernalia.

“To my horror, just up ahead I saw two more syringes, a cooking pot and all the packaging from what I believe is heroin,” said Sarah.

“The path is a public footpath used by all the residents – and it’s right next to a child’s playground.

“Luckily I saw the needles before some unfortunate child, adult or animal happened to stumble upon it. I dread to think what could have happened.”

The 46-year-old reported it to police to make sure the needles were safely disposed of.

“I know people have their reasons for taking drugs but they’re not doing it safely or responsibly,” she added.

“I must admit, it’s made a difference to how people who live here behave too. I make sure I walk my dog before it gets dark since noticing drug users around here.

“My next door neighbour has young children and after this happened, she decided to not let her young ones play outside of their garden anymore. It’s just too risky.

“There are a lot of children around here. It’s frightening to think about what could happened if they picked up something dangerous.

“It’s so important that people report anything they see going on. We live in such a lovely area. We want to keep it that way and make sure it’s safe for everyone.”

A council spokesperson said: “We ask that residents report any issues like this as soon as possible.

“Residents should NOT try to clear up drug paraphernalia themselves. We respond urgently to reports of hazardous waste on Council land such as broken glass, surgical sharps, bodily fluids or dog waste outside schools or on hard surface play areas.

“If you are concerned that a specific area might be subject to anti-social behaviour, contact the

community Safety Team on 01527 534187 or email at saferredditch@redditchbc.gov.uk.”

Inspector Mark Chappell, of Redditch Safer Neighbourhood Team, added: “We always strive to do all we can to protect those in the community from harm.

“Our officers will continue to work with partners including the council, schools and housing associations in a bid to address any potential issues – including drugs – across Redditch.

“We are keen to engage with the community and will investigate any reports of criminal activity we receive.”

Anyone who spots anything of concern can call 101 and report it to police. Residents can report issues to the council by following links on the council’s website or by calling 01527 881188.

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