Newsletter - February 2020


Dear Residents

Welcome to the fifth newsletter from the St. Katharine and Wapping Safer Neighbourhood Ward Panel. We are a non-political voluntary group working with the Police Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT), The London Borough of Tower Hamlets (LBTH) and residents to make our district a better and safer place in which to live and work.

Highlights of the progress made since our last newsletter in September 2019:

  • Twenty drug dealers prosecuted in the two months to November
  • New dedicated ward police officers appointed
  • CCTV installed at Waterside Gardens, a small riverside park on Wapping High Street that had become a focus for anti-social behaviour
  • Tower Hamlets Council has appointed seven new enforcement officers to help deal with anti-social behaviour. Some of these will focus on St Katherine and Wapping.

1) New Year Reminders

 Please continue to report all instances of anti-social behaviour (ASB) to Tower Hamlets Council on:

https://forms.towerhamlets.gov.uk/service/report_anti_social_behaviour

Or to the Metropolitan Police: https://www.met.police.uk/ro/report/asb/asb-b/report-antisocial-behaviour/.  

You can also use the link www.met.police.uk and search for Reporting Antisocial Behaviour.

By continuing to report all instances of anti-social behaviour you will help gather information that can improve the resources devoted to our area.  All Reporting methods can be found here: www.skw-wardpanel.org

Please sign up to the Online Watch Link (OWL) https://www.owl.co.uk/met/, a community engagement system used by the Police, to provide local crime alerts and advice on security and by the Council & Ward Panel to inform you about what is happening in your area.

2) Safer Neighbourhood Team

We would like to welcome our new dedicated ward officers, PC Diskaya, PC Moulvi and PCSO De Sousa. They will be conducting high-visibility patrols to deter and disrupt criminal and anti-social behaviour, as well as hold community meetings and public contact sessions.They can be contacted by phone on 0208 721 2854 or email SNTHT-.StKatharines&Wapping@met.police.uk. These are not monitored 24/7, however, so call the non-emergency number 101 out of hours.

In the two-month period to November 2019, 20 drug dealers were prosecuted following complaints and information supplied by residents. More data on crime statistics in our area can be found at: https://www.met.police.uk/a/your-area/met/tower-hamlets/st-katharines-and-wapping/

 3) Tower Hamlets Enforcement Officers (THEOs) and Police

Seven new THEOs will start at the end of March, bringing the total to full complement. They will now provide seven-day cover to help deal with anti-social behaviour, which the council says is one of its biggest challenges and one consistently reported by residents across the borough as a high priority. There are also approximately 80 new police recruits starting in Tower Hamlets and Hackney.

4) Wapping Bus Gate 

The bus gate started operating in Wapping High Street in mid-November and has decreased rat-running traffic through Wapping considerably. In May 2020 there will be a review of the traffic numbers and public feedback. Please give feedback, positive or negative, by email to liveablestreets@towerhamlets.gov.uk

5) SN Board Public Meeting 29th January at Toynbee Hall

This provided an opportunity for residents from across all 20 Wards in Tower Hamlets to meet senior SNT Officers and Council Officers. There was also a Q+A session for local residents. The meeting was attended by Martin Rolston-MPS Superintendent of the SNTs, Ann Corbett-LBTH Divisional Director of Community Safety, Calvin McClean-LBTH Head of SN Ops, Jon Shapiro-Chair of SN Board, MPS Inspector Chris Scamell plus several others.

6) CCTV Waterside Gardens

At the request of the Ward Panel, a CCTV camera has been installed at Waterside Gardens on Wapping High Street. As this is a hotspot for ASB, particularly late at night, please continue to report activity.

7) Shadwell Basin

 Feedback from a residents’ survey and Ward recommendations were given to the council this month. The full report will be available on our website as soon as it is ready for release. Following the death from drowning of a young man in the Basin last July after he climbed down a ladder to enter the water, people must be made aware that this is a dangerous place to swim due to strong underwater currents, hidden ironwork and cold water.

8) The Highway - Pedestrian Safety 

 TFL are undertaking a major review of pedestrian safety on The Highway, but the consultation has been delayed until Summer 2020. The Ward Panel is involved in discussions with TFL and is pressing to improve safety and to bring its findings to the Consultation Stage for Residents as soon as possible. There have been a significant number of serious accidents and fatalities on this road over many years and the published statistics for the last triennial period to 2018 shows much higher numbers than for comparable roads in London. It is the 7th most congested road in the capital and highly polluted.

 9) King Edward Memorial Park (KEMP)

 In May there will be a public consultation on the redesign for the Thames foreshore. Further information will be available nearer to this date, as well as on our website. We encourage everyone to give their feedback.

10) Wapping Station

 A local Campaign Group is pressing TFL to provide step-free access from the street level to the platforms by installing lifts at the far end of the platforms.  TFL has agreed to fund and carry out a feasibility study this Spring and report by the end of the year. The station has many technical and structural challenges that have previously rendered the project cost prohibitive. Local and central governments recognise the requirement to provide step-free access, however, and with the London Dock residential development increasing the local population it will become a greater issue.

 11) Liveable Streets

 We await to hear from the Council when it will begin work on improvements designed to enhance  Wapping as an attractive area in which to live and work. Residents have been consulted on these plans at two public meetings and a workshop.  Further information can be found at  www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/liveablestreets

12) Community News Update

 Wapping Community Forum (WCF) was established in November 2019 to give a voice to and represent the interests of local residents on issues that are not included in the remit of the Ward Panel. They have many interests and aim to focus on several areas such as LBTH maintained parks and gardens. We hope to liaise with them when there are issues of common interest. More information can be found at www.wappingcommunityforum.com

13) Recruitment

We are looking to recruit new members to the Ward Panel with specific responsibilities/skills. If you are interested and would like more information please contact us at contact@skw-wardpanel.org.

You are welcome to attend a Ward Panel meeting as a guest, to see the type of work we do.

Ward Panel Newsletter Feb 2020.pdf

St. Katharine and Wapping Safer Neighbourhood Ward Panel February 2020