Alok Sharma, Member of Parliament for Reading West, recently chaired a public meeting for the residents of Purley to question members of Thames Valley Police and West Berkshire Council on local issues of concern.
Joining Alok on the panel were Superintendent Jim Weems and Sergeant Daniel Lond from Thames Valley Police and Paul Anstey, Head of Public Protection and Culture at West Berkshire Council. Over 80 local residents attended including local councillors who were able to address their fellow residents’ questions.
Alok organised the meeting following correspondence from residents who were concerned about crime and anti-social behaviour in the area.
One of the key issues that was raised at the meeting was that of drug dealing. Residents conveyed their concerns over what they felt was visible drug dealing in Purley. Superintendent Weems explained to residents that there are wider issues relating to drug dealing and consumption in the nation but the Police are working to tackle the issue within West Berkshire.
Superintendent Weems urged residents to call 101 to report a crime that does not require an emergency response. Alternatively, residents were also advised to contact their local neighbourhood policing team via PangbourneNHPT@thamesvalley.pnn.police.uk.
Some residents also enquired about burglaries in the area and Superintendent Weems assured them that the rate of burglaries in the area, although low before, has decreased.
The Purley Residents’ Support Committee were also in attendance, and informed other residents and the panel about the initiatives and action they are taking to tackle anti-social behaviour in Purley.
Alok Sharma said: “This was a helpful meeting for residents to raise concerns directly with the officers responsible for policing their local area and local council members. I have written formally to both Thames Valley Police and West Berkshire Council regarding issues raised at the meeting and will follow up with attendees. My thanks to everyone who attended the meeting.”
Photo: (From L-R) Paul Anstey, Alok Sharma MP, Superintendent Jim Weems and Sergeant Daniel Lond