Gates plan to tackle Mansfield drugs hotspot

Gates could be installed across this entrance. Picture: Google Earth.
Gates could be installed across this entrance. Picture: Google Earth.

New gates could be installed at a Mansfield passageway in a bid to tackle rough sleeping and drug use.

A planning application has been submitted seeking permission to install security gates at the entrance of 22 Church Street.

Mansfield District Council wants to install 2.2m black cast metal gates across the archway leading to the derelict office block.

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In the application, James Palmer, council anti-social behaviour response officer, said: “The property was in use as offices, but has now been vacant for a considerable period of time.

“The property is set back from public views and attracts anti-social behaviour.

“The building has been continually stripped and vandalised and the area provides cover for rough sleepers and drug users, resulting in the site becoming covered with rubbish, including drug paraphernalia.

“The site is poorly lit and its position behind the buildings that front Church Street means the site is invisible to CCTV and there is very little natural surveillance.”

Mr Palmer said council building control officers had visited the site and said that, while the structure is not considered dangerous, “they would not recommend the fire service enter the building in the event of a fire due to the condition of the building and the number of tyres that have been dumped within.”

Mr Palmer said: “This represents a risk to both the fire service and the rough sleepers that the building attracts.”

As well as number 22, the passageway provides access to the rear of the adjacent shop and pub, although both are also currently vacant.

A decision from the council, the local planning authority, is due by mid-May.