Discussion Forum
Mindless Vandalism in Hebden Bridge

From Peter Ford
Tuesday, 28 August 2007

The photographs of the broken windows and damaged cars posted on the main site show only a limited selection of the vandalism which occurred in Hebden Bridge over the bank holiday weekend.

You can also add to those examples the phone box near the cinema which had every pain of glass smashed and also the window of the clothes shop across from the shoulder had also been a targeted and smashed. Also a car broken into and goods stolen from it.

Where were the police?

Did the cctv cameras in the square and on the bridge on market street pick up any footage of the destructive rampage?

Does anyone have any information as to who was involved in the vandalism?

Does anyone know if any arrests where made?

The problems of vandalism does exist in Hebden Bridge. Im sure most people would be aware of that. However, from recent experinces I fear the problem seems to be getting far worse.

From Janice S
Tuesday, 28 August 2007

According to the Courier: "Police are looking for two teenagers – a boy wearing a black hooded top, and a girl wearing a white hooded top." They are also looking at the CCTV footage.

It's very upsetting that this has happened again, so soon after the last bus shelter vandalism. I saw a PC and a Community Support Officer in Albert Street at about 11 pm on Saturday but obviously two officers aren't enough to patrol the whole town centre.

From Patricia Banyard
Monday, 3 September 2007

I appeal to all the late night partygoers in Hebden to keep a look out for those people who like to wreck our beautiful town for their own amusement. I think the only way to stop them is to report them. Many of us do not like to feel like a "snitch" or want to get involved with the authorities, I feel the same but also I do not like outsiders to come here and smash the place up. I do not think they would like it if someone did it to them, so lets not let anyone get away with it.

Whether you are a churchgoer or not like me, I think it is one step beyond to go wrecking the church. If they want to have a laugh tell them to go jump in the canal. Take your mobile phone and make the call when you see someone fooling around near cars and shops etc.

From Ian M
Tuesday, 4 September 2007

just one question Patricia.

Who said it was outsiders - surely you are not denying the possibilty this could have been done by people who live in Hebden?

From Simon B
Wednesday, 5 September 2007

It'll be some local youngster who's parents have given the money to have a good night on the lash. 'Go out on the streets drinking son, just not our street!'

Posted by Anna S
Thursday, 6 September 2007

We moved out of Hebden months ago because of the mindless youths. Even the police were unable to sort them out. With Hebden Bridge its a case of put up or shut up, and thanks to R***** and his mates for relieving my friend of his phone in Mytholmroyd on Friday night.

Posted by Graham Barker
Friday, 7 September 2007

Last night, tyres on at least four parked vehicles were spiked on Foster Lane. One had all four tyres pierced and presumably ruined; two apiece on two others. Damage to the stone wall next to the Holme Place flats may have been done by the same person(s). Does anyone have any relevant information on this?

I don't know whether the police have been informed but they're unlikely to take any interest in it.

Posted by Bernie B
Saturday, 8 September 2007

'Crime is dropping' we are constantly told, this is quite simply because people have given up on reporting to the police, as I qoute a prime example "I don't know whether the police have been informed but they're unlikely to take any interest in it."

The police will do what they can, but as with most things, unless people speak up and report those who are doing it, (someone must know!) then there is very little they can do.

Report everything, then the force may realise we need more officers.

Posted by Rev Tony Buglass
Saturday, 8 September 2007

Well, we've reported the broken windows at the Methodist Church. And the next lot - the dance group using our hall went in this morning and found broken glass everywhere. Someone had had a merry time smashing in our back windows. I've just been speaking to our steward, who has spent hours there today waiting for the police, who haven't yet turned up.

I'm prepared to accept that the police are under-resourced, unable to be everywhere at once. Short answer is, they shouldn't be.

Posted by Sam F
Sunday, 9 September 2007

It might be a provocative response, but looking at my council tax bill the police are itemised separately.

Maybe, if we all withheld this amount from our council tax, someone might listen.

At the moment Hebden Bridge is becoming lawless!

Posted by Graham Barker
Sunday, 9 September 2007

Re the Foster Lane tyre spikings: the total of tyres spiked is now estimated at 20. At around £50 per tyre that's £1000, not counting lost work time. Without going into too much detail, the finger is starting to point at youths who live in rented houses in nearby streets.

The police have indeed been informed. (I was unsure about this earlier because our own vehicle wasn't involved). No one is holding their breath about any effective action.

Interesting to read the post about vandalism at the Methodist Church, as my daughters were among those unable to attend a Saturday morning dance class because of it. Thus do the ripples of anti-social behaviour spread.

I don't know how much good it will do, but I'm going to write a letter complaining about police inactivity to the chief constable of West Yorkshire and copy it to Chris McCafferty and the Home Secretary. If others feel like doing the same or similar, someone might start to take notice.

A standard official excuse for inadequate policing in HB is that it's worse in other places. At this rate, it soon may not be.

Posted by Janice S
Friday, 14 September 2007

Re Foster Lane - is this a Neighbourhood Watch area? If it isn't, it would be worth setting one up. It isn't a lot of work and it gives the police a single point of contact. You also get a Neighbourhood Watch officer to report problems to - I get the impression they take reports from Neighbourhood Watch areas more seriously.

Posted by Michael Piggott
Friday, 14 September 2007

As a) the cctv is apparently useless and b) the police seem incapable of mounting effective patrols, in order to send a clear message that vandalism, violence and threatening behavior will not be tolerated, has anyone considered setting up organised citizenry patrols to confront these scum?

I know that vigilantism is generally considered unacceptable, and I would only advocate using such force as is necessary to effect citizens' arrests, but surely decent people have the right to defend themselves against vicious, violent scum?

Posted by Gwen G
Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Graham Barker is right - we need to make our collective voice heard. But I wrote on behalf of the newly revitalised Calder Civic Trust on 3 September to the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police, the Local Superintendent of Police, Calderdale Cllr Mrs. G. Carter who sits on the Police Committee, Calderdale Cllr Mr. G. Horsfall who sits on the Safer Communities Partnership and our own town council.

To all of them, after describing recent events, I said our town needs help and the only way forward seems to be the reopening of the police station and the staffing of it 24 hours a day, at least at weekends.

Posted by Graham Barker
Thursday, 20 September 2007

Thanks for the info Gwen. I've just sent an email to the West Yorkshire Police Authority who invite feedback about policing issues. I've also copied it to Chris McCafferty and Nader Fekri.

I won't post the text here but if anyone wants a copy I'll happily email it to them. I've made it fairly uncompromising in the hope of getting some kind of reaction. It really is a desperate state of affairs when legitimate concerns go ignored.

I'll report back if/when I get a reply from WYPA.

Thanks too to Janice for her suggestion about Neighbourhood Watch. I've started following this up but mainly out of curiosity at this stage. It would be useful to get feedback on the level of potential support for a Foster Lane area NW initiative. Anybody interested?

From Janice S
Thursday, 18 October 2007

Just got new of local events for the "Not in My Neighbourhood" week - work that is being done in the area towards tackling crime, the fear of crime and anti-social behaviour

Thursday October 18th – Hebden Bridge Market (2pm)

Ward Meetings in 2007 – 6.30pm at the White Lion Public House, Hebden Bridge on the following dates:
Thursday, October 18 and Thursday, January 3, 2008

Surgeries in 2007 – Hebden Bridge Police Station on the following times and dates:
2pm, Wednesday, November 14 and 7pm Wednesday, January 2, 2008


See also

Hebweb News