A GROUP of residents concerned about anti-social behaviour originating from a secluded path have petitioned for CCTV cameras to be installed there.
Dr Kumar Sangara, 58, of Roseville Road, Hayes, started the petition in response to community-wide concern about the increasing levels of disturbance and crime around a narrow footpath that starts in Roseville Road and leads to Cranford Park and St Dunstan's Church.
It is hoped that the presence of the cameras will deter yobs and drug deal-ers from using the path as a meeting place. More than 100 residents have signed the petition so far, and the number of local people asking that something be done continues to grow.
Dr Kumar has lived in the area for seven years and says that residents no longer feel safe.
He said: "Things have gradually been getting worse. There is a presence of community support officers, and they have been very helpful and listened to our concerns, but they can't be here around the clock and the situation is getting out of hand.
"The youths hang around in the night screaming and shouting, and residents are hesitant to confront them in case it leads to harassment. They use the alley as a place to meet, and when it's dark it is an ideal escape route; they can just disappear into the park.
"All the residents are saying the same thing, and we don't want to wait for something bad to happen before the issue is dealt with. It may be expensive to install CCTV but it will be a great help for the community. It will stop the levels of crime we are now seeing in the area.
"If these people know that someone is watching they will think twice about what they are doing. It is a quiet neighbourhood and we want to keep it that way. No one wants to feel intimidated leaving their own home."
Inspector Mike Smith of Hillingdon police explained how patrols have been stepped up to tackle the spate of crime in the area.
He said: "In this particular area the local police team have changed their shift hours to increase high-visibility patrols to tackle the burglary problem.
"Several arrests have been made recently in relation to drug-related offences around the alley. "We are aware of the need to improve the feeling of safety and we are in dialogue with our partners to consider environmental alterations to aid crime prevention.
"Burglary has increased in the borough and we are applying a concerted effort to address this problem. Extensive resources have been deployed with noticeable results."