Community comes together to improve life in Leigh

The community is coming together
The community is coming together

Residents are joining forces with the council, police and politicians for a month of action to improve the area where they live.

Wigan Council, Greater Manchester Police, residents' groups, councillors and Leigh MP Jo Platt will work together to address concerns raised and encourage people to #BelieveInLeigh.

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The campaign launched with an environmental initiative to transform the area around Leigh West.

Council leader Coun David Molyneux said: “We have been listening to what the people of Leigh say they want for their communities. The message we are getting from residents is that they want support to make where they live thrive. Working with our partners, we will be looking at how we can come together to address concerns raised by the people of Leigh.

"This month of action will not be a solution to all of the issues which residents have expressed. But we hope it will be the beginning of a community coming together and working on a long-term plan to make Leigh a place where everyone feels safe.

“This action is a great example of how working closely with our partners can help us to create a better picture of a place and what each organisation can do to make a difference to residents every day.”

Ms Platt said: “I am so grateful to the resident groups and residents of Leigh West for their determination and resolve to get their concerns heard and action taken in the area.

“I have been immensely proud to work alongside these groups, to ensure that their voices are heard and will continue to do all that I can to help. I am confident that the month of action will be used as a catalyst for collaboration, co-operation and meaningful action to support and strengthen our community.”

Supt Steve Keeley said: “Greater Manchester Police is committed to listening to and working with people to tackle the issues that matter most to them.

“We will always take the concerns of the local community seriously and will work with them and partner agencies to make Leigh as safe as it can possibly be.

“This month of action is the start of a long-term plan to get to the root cause and deal with those issues and individuals that have a negative impact on the area in the most effective way.

“The vast majority of Leigh residents are a credit to their community and I would urge anyone with concerns to continue to be proactive in reporting crime to police on 101 or via the new live chat function of the GMP website.”

The month of action will include a wide range of proactive operations that look at factors such as environmental issues, anti-social behaviour hot spots and promoting good licensing practice.

There will also be events working with young people in Leigh, high-profile police operations and enforcement action for environmental issues.

Chris Anderson, chairman of Leigh Residents' Association, said: “Leigh residents have been working hard on improving the area and one of the focused issues is the growing problem of fly tipping and litter on our streets.

"A few months ago Leigh residents organised a number of meetings with MPs and council directors to highlight the problem and working together on strategies to improve and hopefully eradicate the growing problem.

"After several high-level meetings, we came up with the amnesty drive including what can be done about the persistent offenders, one of the most important aspects of this strategy are the enforcement of fines to stop this disgusting behaviour after the drive.

“Our members will be fully engaged in this important event and beyond with any assistance with information to support the council on enforcement.”

Susan Gredecki, chairman of Leigh Neighbours, added: "Tackling environmental issues here in Leigh West is one of the top priorities that local residents asked Leigh Neighbours to address, so we are delighted to support the council in its efforts to improve the Leigh Neighbours project area.

“Environmental anti-social behaviour has a detrimental effect on the morale of the local community and these areas that are being targeted are subject to higher than average levels.

“We all need to pull together - agencies, charities, schools and other community groups alike - to tackle this problem by adopting a zero tolerance policy towards perpetrators, promoting educational campaigns and encouraging local people to show greater consideration for their neighbours and greater pride in the place they live."

Residents are encouraged to report issues like environmental problems or anti-social behaviour through the MyReportIt app or online.