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Harrow Borough Council u-turn on locked parks welcomed
A council U-turn on controversial plans to leave the borough’s parks unlocked at night has been welcomed by protesters.
Yesterday Harrow Borough Council announced it would keep parks locked, overturning a decsdion made in the February budget.
People who living near parks across Harrow celebrated the news yesterday outside the civic centre ahead of a cabinet meeting they were due to protest against the plans.
Simon Brown, who lives near Harrow Recreation Ground, was part of the campaign against the proposals which would have been implemented this month.
He said: “When we first heard of the plans I was very concerned and were many others. We all treasure your parks and we were worried about what would happen if they were not locked.
“This turnaround is great news and where are all very happy but it is a shame it came so so so late.”
Since the plans were announced earlier in the year people who live near parks have protested about the plans, over fears the measure will leader to crime, vandalism and anti-social behaviour.
Leader of the Conservative group councillor Susan Hall said: “There’s no doubt this is the right decision; what’s so disgraceful is the process Harrow residents have had to endure to get here.
“Labour hid this cut away in their budget, and it was only after the Conservatives started asking questions in February that the detail behind it was revealed.
“Independent Labour then picked it up, insisting leaving parks and cemeteries unlocked was the right thing to do – indeed, Cllr. Idaikkadar called it a ‘common-sense’ decision just last week.
“Thousands of committed residents, as well myself, have been complaining about this for months, raising legitimate concerns about crime and anti-social behaviour.
“That the administration has, in the end, performed this u-turn is not actually an exercise in listening as they claim, but rather a desperate act to avoid further bad press.”
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