7 October 2015

Flat shutdown after complaints of wild parties and violence

A flat at the centre of 24 hour parties, violent physical assaults and illegal riding of motorbikes, in Powis Square, a quiet, residential area in central Brighton, has been shut down for three months.

The 20 year old tenant effectively ‘lost control’ of the privately rented flat and numerous visitors used her house for holding parties while one regular visitor advertised parties on Facebook.

Drug use was reported as well as suspected dealing, cases of people climbing neighbouring balconies to access the property,  numerous incidents of fighting and ‘domestics’ from within the property and in communal areas.

Brighton magistrates imposed the Section 80 Closure Order, after hearing evidence of the worst and most violent cases of anti-social behaviour that the council has ever experienced.

The order, made under the Anti-Social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014, is the first of its kind in the city by Brighton & Hove City Council and was served on the property on 6 October 2015. It prevents any person other than the landlord from entering the premises, and any person entering the premises who is not authorised to do so is liable to arrest.

Brighton and Hove Community Safety Team received complaints from local residents of parties running throughout the night, speeding motorbikes and revving engines as well as loud verbal abuse and worked to support and re-assure those residents whilst gathering evidence. The Community Safety Team also liaised with the tenant and landlord of the property to ensure that they were aware of the reported concerns and what action would be taken if the behaviour didn’t cease.

Peter Wileman, Community Safety Manager for Brighton and Hove City Council, said: “The occupant of this premises and her visitors have clearly caused considerable nuisance and distress towards the neighbours of this quiet, residential square. The Community Safety Team has responded quickly and robustly to address the concerns of local residents and has taken swift and decisive action.”

A local resident said: “I cannot praise the Council’s Community Safety Team‎ enough. For several months the tenant and her associates brought misery to residents in Powis Square due to their constant anti-social behaviour. In exasperation I reported this to the Community Safety Team and within two days they had arranged a meeting to ‎discuss the issues and way forward. They encouraged us to report the anti-social behaviour and within a month of the initial report had ‎secured a closure order on the property. The Community Safety Team kept us informed continuously and clearly worked longer hours than was required to resolve this issue to the relief of many residents.”

Councillor Emma Daniel, Chair of the Neighbourhood, Communities & Equalities Committee, said: “No-one in our city should suffer from anti-social behaviour. The Community Safety Partnership will continue to use the powers under the new Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act to ensure that communities are kept safe from such problem premises should they emerge anywhere in our city. If anyone experiences antisocial behaviour we would advise them to make contact with our Community Safety Team or the Police.”

Anyone experiencing antisocial behaviour or hate incidents can contact the Community Safety Casework Team on 01273 292735 or email communitysafety.casework@brighton-hove.gcsx.gov.uk

Or report to the Police on 101 (999 in an emergency).