Drug den shut down by council, police and landlords

A drug den has been shut down by a partnership between Plymouth City Council, Devon and Cornwall Police and landlords Westward Housing Group.

The Council successfully applied to Plymouth Magistrates on Friday 9 September for the three month closure order for the property in Hospital Road, following ongoing complaints around drug dealing and anti-social behaviour at the property.

Councillor Dave Downie, Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities for Plymouth City Council, said: “I am delighted that the court has decided to grant this three month closure order as it sends out a clear message that we will not tolerate drug use and drug dealing in the city, or the crime and anti-social behaviour associated with it.

“We will continue to work with Devon and Cornwall Police and local housing providers such as Westward to tackle this, and we thank them for their continued support. Congratulations to our own team here at the Council as well.

“We would also urge any local residents suffering similar issues not to suffer in silence, but to report them, as we will take action.”

Sally Hutchings, South and Central Neighbourhood Inspector for Devon and Cornwall Police, said: “We are delighted with judgement at court today. This has been as a result of the hard work and partnership with the Neighbourhood Policing Team, Plymouth City Council and the housing provider, Westward Housing.  We worked together to gather evidence from a number of sources over a long period of time.

“We really care about our communities, and want those who seek to try to destroy the lives of other residents to know that we will take action, and that their housing will be at risk. It was particularly rewarding that since the action, other residents have stated that they felt safer and were allowing their children to play in the park. For us as agencies, with the power to make the difference, those kind of comments make all the hard work worthwhile.”

Paul Raeburn, Housing Services Area Manager for Westward said: “Westward is pleased that this closure order has been granted. It is testament to the excellent joint working and will improve the safety and quality of life for the local community.  The support of our residents and the local community as we have worked through the evidence gathering and witness taking has been outstanding.  We hope this encourages others experiencing similar situations to come forward and work with us to make a difference in their communities.”

Notes for Editors

Westward Housing Group is a leading provider of affordable housing and services in the south west. It provides 7,500 affordable, high quality homes and housing related services across Devon and Cornwall. Westward works in partnership with local authorities to meet the needs of local people in the greatest need of housing. www.westwardhousing.org.uk