Police to step up patrols to stop ‘lockdown loiterers’ in Stoke-on-Trent community


Police are to step up patrols in parts of the city after complaints of ‘lockdown loiterers’ increased.

A local councillor says she has received ‘countless’ complaints about groups congregating in playing fields and on the terraced streets of Smallthorne.

Ward councillor Candi Chetwynd has now asked Staffordshire Police to crack down on loiterers in the area, including the Norton Heights estate.

Councillor Chetwynd said: “Lockdown loiterers need to know that this is not an indefinite Bank Holiday, a jolly, a joke or something that is not life threatening.

“This is a lockdown to save lives. Most people have given our country the best possible examples on how to so this right and do this well.

Councillor Candi Chetwynd

“Families are being asked to stay home and with young children this seems an impossible task but we are doing it.

“So many of us are feeling to pain of social isolation. I understand it is a huge shock to the system. We are all in the same boat and paddling together.

“Please don’t paddle against the tide by going out to flout the guidelines. I have had countless reports of loitering going on in the terraced streets of Smallthorne and the communal areas and playing fields of Norton Heights.

“It has not gone on unnoticed and will not continue without consequences.

“I work very closely with Staffordshire Police and have asked for them to heavily step up patrols throughout my ward of Ford Green, Smallthorne and Norton Heights.

“We want the best for everyone so please make sure that you are on the right side of the law.”

Police (stock image)

A Staffordshire Police spokesman said: “We’ve been working closely with the council to continually update them on our neighbourhood policing strategy within the community.

“We have seen levels of crime reduce since the beginning of the lockdown with people on the whole abiding by social distancing measures. We continue to patrol high footfall locations to give both visibility and reassurance.”





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