Calls for Ed Sheeran gig money to be spent tackling drug dealing in Roundhay Park

Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran
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The chairman of a community group in Roundhay has called for money being raised by pop superstar Ed Sheeran's upcoming 80,000 capacity gig to be spent tackling issues in the area.

Over 100 residents of Roundhay met on Tuesday night to raise concerns in the area.
The meeting, held at St Andrews Church, saw many residents speak about their experiences of being witness to disorder in the park and surrounding areas.

Roundhay meeting cc Sara Dawson

Roundhay meeting cc Sara Dawson

One woman told the meeting she felt intimidated walking around the park alone and 'didn’t feel safe enough to even go on the park to look at the eclipse'.

Police officers who attended the meeting told residents to continue reporting crime and number plates to investigate.

The officers said the best advice was to keep reporting the incidents.

Other residents asked for speed cameras to be installed and more to be done for the suspected drug dealing on the park.

Chairman of community group Friends of Roundhay Park, Richard Critchley, 69, has called for a percentage of money raised from the upcoming Ed Sheeran concert to be put back into the park.

He said: "I am not against the concert but I just hope a percentage of the money is put back into maintaining the park.

"Even if it it just for one or two more staff, it would make a huge difference."

Following the meeting in response to request for comment, Cllr Angela Wenham, Councillor for Roundhay Ward said she was aware of problems in the area.

The councillor said: "We are working together as a team with the Police, Anti –Social Behaviour Team and Friends of Roundhay Park to get these issues resolved."He said: "The concert is going to be really popular and will put Leeds back on the map again.

Mr Critchley, who has been a resident in the area for over 12 years, praised the work of the 'amazing' volunteers who help clean up the park.

He said if the council could employ a litter warden full-time to monitor the park, their wages would quickly be covered by fines which would be seen as a deterrent.

Mr Critchley added: "I think CCTV would be helpful in the park, which is apparently being looked into.

"It is just about people being responsible really.

"We want people to enjoy the park and I have no problem with people using it for barbecues or other activities but people have to be responsible.

"This is a park not just for Roundhay but for everyone in Leeds to enjoy."