A second property in Wolverhampton has been closed down by authorities using new powers to tackle anti social behaviour.

The City of Wolverhampton Council, supported by West Midlands Police and Wolverhampton Homes, secured the closure order for 34 Browning Crescent, Bushbury, amid concerns about drug use and other issues.

It follows a similar closure order being secured against a property in Parkfields last week.

The power for local authorities to issue closure notices to tenants, and subsequently apply to the courts for closure orders, was introduced through the new Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. It is designed to protect victims and communities by quickly closing premises that are causing nuisance or disorder.

The closure notice was issued to the tenant of the Wolverhampton Homes' managed property in Bushbury late last month, with the order granted by Dudley Magistrates Court on Wednesday (4 November, 2015).

It determined that the property be closed to everyone except representatives of the council or Wolverhampton Homes, which owns the property in question - meaning the tenant and visitors are unable to access the house for up to 6 months.

There have been concerns about drug use, drug dealing and other criminal and anti social behaviour at 34 Browning Crescent since 2013, but these have escalated in recent months to the detriment of residents on the estate.

Reports included addicts entering the property and taking drugs outside a local primary school and in a nearby playground; indeed used syringes were found in the play area over the summer.

Bushbury North Councillor Ian Angus said: "This is a great example of agencies working together to tackle a serious problem that was blighting the lives of local residents. It shows the importance of community intelligence, and giving people the chance to speak out about issues affecting them.

"And it sends out a very clear message - drug dealing on our estates will not be tolerated."

Councillor Peter Bilson, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Assets, added: "It is clear that many people feel uncomfortable about reporting anti social behaviour, for fear or repercussions or reprisals, and these new powers give the authorities the chance to take action using information they have obtained from victims anonymously.

"I am delighted that our first 2 applications for closure orders have been granted by the courts - demonstrating how seriously the authorities take the matter of anti social behaviour."

People are encouraged to report concerns about anti social behaviour to Wolverhampton's Anti Social Behaviour Team in confidence by emailing customer.services@wolverhampton.gov.uk or calling 01902 551188.

  • released: Monday 9 November, 2015