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Tories & Labour fail to back dispersal order in Pilgrims Hatch

October 20, 2011 1:49 AM

Cllr David Kendall & Cllr Vicky Davies with Rev James Pate at Bishops Hall this week (Brentwood Gazette)

Cllr David Kendall & Cllr Vicky Davies with Rev James Pate at Bishops Hall this week

Liberal Democrat councillors in Pilgrims Hatch were left shocked and dismayed when the vast majority of the Conservative group running Brentwood Borough Council and the sole Labour member voted against the introduction of a Dispersal Order covering the whole of Pilgrims Hatch at last night's Full Council meeting.

The motion, submitted by Lib Dem Leader Cllr David Kendall, called for the council to support a Dispersal Order being introduced across Pilgrims Hatch. He said it was needed to fight against the increase in anti- social behaviour across several parts of the ward.

Cllr Kendall also said he was keen to see the Council give the Police their full backing for the move but it didn't happen.

Instead Tory Leader Cllr Louise McKinlay moved an amendment calling on the Pilgrims Hatch ward councillors to identify certain roads where the Dispersal Order should be implemented. The three ward councillors said they couldn't support the amendment because they felt that highlighting a few roads would simply move the problem to those roads in the Hatch that weren't covered under the dispersal order and leave the police with an almost impossible enforcement issue. They also said that if the police had just wanted specific roads included they would have asked for it, but they hadn't.

Cllr David Kendall said:

"I am disgusted that the majority of the Tory group and the sole Labour councillor were unable to support us on this very important law and order issue. We currently have a serious anti social behaviour problem in the Hatch that needs to be addressed and the dispersal order covering the ward would have given the police the extra powers they needed to tackle the problem.

"Many local residents told us they were sick and tired of a few yobs causing damage to Bishops Hall and the play area and wanted to see firm action take to address the problem. The Council should have been united on this issue and sent the yobs a clear message that enough is enough but sadly the support wasn't there. I believe the councillors who were unable to support our motion have let down the residents of Pilgrims Hatch very badly and should be ashamed of their decision".