Following a meeting on Monday 8 June between FOIRP, the Town Council and Bradford Council there was unanimous agreement that action was needed immediately to stop the persistent issues which arise whenever there is warm, sunny weather in Ilkley.
The FOIRP Chair and Deputy Chair met with the Town Mayor and Deputy Mayor, along with representatives of with Bradford Council. A Draft Plan was discussed and the basic elements agreed.
“An important aspect of ensuring future action is taken promptly when required is the acknowledgement that we need a trigger for the necessary actions when it is clear the park areas are going to be more intensively used”, said Chair of FOIRP, Ed Duguid, “ and managers know they have the resources available to put these measures in place. There was agreement that this was required. The Bradford Council representatives said the resources have been identified to support a range of measures that should alleviate many of the problems raised in recent weeks.”
Key measures for immediate effect will include Joint Patrols by the Police and Park Wardens to enforce the Bye-laws and to combat anti-social behaviour which may result from drinking too much alcohol or from drug taking, both of which we witnessed in recent weeks. Youth Workers will be deployed to engage with young people and address any issues which may be impacting on the enjoyment of the parks by other visitors. It was acknowledged that other legal measures may be required, but that these cannot be put in place in the short term and it as important that a range of partners were consulted on such matters.
Littering has also been a major problem during these periods of high intensity use of the parks. Actions agreed for immediate effect are daily collections and clearance of bins during these periods, the introduction of larger bins and more bin capacity to assist those who genuinely want to dispose of their rubbish responsibly. In addition, the Council will be assisting FOIRP with additional resources (Litter Pickers, gloves, bags, etc.) so volunteers who want to help out can do so safely.