GOSPORT BOROUGH COUNCIL have announced it has boarded up a Gosport flat where suspected drug use and dealing were making neighbours’ lives a misery.
Supported by police, the council won a court order to shut up the flat in Trinity Close, Gosport.
Portsmouth Magistrates Court granted the order after learning of the ordeal suffered by people living near the single-bed council property.
The court was told that residents were stressed and anxious. They felt frightened, harassed and intimidated by the tenant and the many visitors to the flat. They were also too scared to appear in court.
Problems reported to officials included:
- visitors to the flat, day and night, causing noise and disturbance and threatening residents
- people trying to force entry to the flat
- drug paraphernalia left in the area
- people sleeping or hiding near residents’ front doors
- daily visits by a black convertible BMW, owned by a well-known figure on the drug scene
- noise keeping neighbours awake at night
- locks on communal doors being broken, allowing anyone access
The behaviour continued despite police involvement and official warnings from the council, the court was told.
Under the three-month closure order, anyone who enters the flat is liable to a fine or prison or both. The council is now seeking to evict the tenant permanently.
Councillor Sue Ballard, who chairs the council’s Housing Board, said: ‘We’ve worked with our police colleagues to tackle long-standing issues at this property.
“Neighbours have had to endure so much disruption and stress from noise, anti-social behaviour and suspected drug-related activity.
‘We’re pleased the court supported a closure order to put an end to their ordeal. We will not tolerate this kind of behaviour.”
PC Vicki Wallace, of Hampshire Constabulary‘s Gosport central neighbourhoods policing team, said: “Residents have had to endure appalling behaviour, threats and intimidation, which has quite simply made life miserable for them.
“This type of activity shows the long-term impact of illegal drug use and the effect it can have on the community.
“We work closely with our partners, including Gosport Borough Council, to target drugs supply and the knock-on effects. I hope this action reassures the public that the strong partnership in Gosport will use any and all powers available to address the concerns of residents and restore order to the chaotic environment they have unfairly had to endure.”
“We want to thank the local community for their help and patience, and encourage anyone affected by drug use and anti-social behaviour to continue to report this to the police, the local council or their housing provider so it can be tackled.”
PICTURED BY GOSPORT BOROUGH COUNCIL: Drugs paraphernalia in the bedroom and living room of the Trinity Close flat (reproduced with permission)