Offenders praised for Leeds clean-up work

Gamble Hill.
Gamble Hill.

Offenders have been praised for carrying out work to benefit a West Leeds community as part of a scheme which is hoped will help them rehabilitate.

Councillors invited West Yorkshire Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) to carry out the Community Payback clean-up project in the Gamble Hill area.

Offenders spent more than 250 hours working to clear the site of undergrowth, rubbish, fly-tipped material and to remove fencing that was not needed.

The work is estimated to have saved Leeds City Council around £2,000 in clean-up works.

Coun Debra Coupar, executive member for communities, said: “The work delivered by the Community Payback team in Gamble Hill is a great example of how offenders can put something back into the community while learning important life skills.

“Residents have been full of praise for the work of the men and women doing Community Payback, especially as the rats have disappeared.”

The scheme is managed by the West Yorkshire CRC, through Interserve, in partnership with Leeds City Council.

It works to renovate a range of locations such as community gardens, parks, churchyards and schools.

Andrew Evans, placement co-ordinator at West Yorkshire CRC, said: “Community Payback is a punishment for breaking the law but it is also a way for those on probation to learn new skills and to support their rehabilitation.

“The team have learned some important new skills which will help in their rehabilitation.”

People can suggest other projects for the CRC to carry out at www.westyorkshirecrc.co.uk

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