A scheme to force bad housing landlords to clean up their act will be introduced after being approved by councillors.
A Selective Licensing scheme will see private landlords in 13 Hartlepool streets require a licence to operate.
It aims to clamp down on nuisance tenants and drive up housing standards for 544 properties.
There were calls from councillors and members of the Public for more streets to be included in the Hartlepool Borough Council scheme.
But officers warned they should only include streets where there was evidence to show there were problems to protect them from a potential judicial review by private landlords.
The council included streets where at least 50 per cent are privately rented and there was a repeat antisocial behaviour rate of 15 per cent.
Damien Wilson, the council’s assistant director of regeneration, said:
“If you’ve got bad landlords and bad management agents who don’t do proper reference checking and bung anybody in you end up with problems such as antisocial behaviour and drug dealing.
“This is all about driving up standards.”
He added selective licencing has worked in other areas of the town and elsewhere in the country.
The streets that will be the subject of the new five-year scheme are Cornwall Street, Kimberley Street, Richmond Street, and Rydal Street in the Burn Valley ward. In Foggy Furze ward it includes Borrowdale Street and Sydenham Road.
Five streets in Victoria Ward of Dent Street, Furness Street, Sheriff Street, Straker Street, and Stephen Street.
Burbank Street and St Oswald’s Street are also included in the Headland and Harbour and Jesmond wards.
Julie Rudge, secretary of the Dent and Derwent Street Residents’ Association said she was disappointed other streets around Dent Street were not included.
“I know there are issues in streets you are taking out,” she said.
Councillor Carl Richardson said residents of Belk Street also wanted to be included.
Councillor Pam Hargreaves said: “Picking out one or two streets makes it toothless.”
Officers agreed provide details of other streets that could be included if they lowered the criteria standards at the next meeting.
Source – Hartlepool Mail, 19 Jan 2015
Foodbank organizers in Hartlepool have praised allotment holders who were asked to pledge some veg after an amazing response.
Growers across the town donated an impressive 55 large boxes of produce bursting with fresh vegetables.
They answered an appeal to donate surplus produce to Hartlepool Foodbank by supporting Hartlepool Borough Council’s Big Christmas Dinner Challenge.
It was also run in partnership with the Allotments’ Tenants Focus Group and the town’s Waverley Terrace Community Allotment.
Kate Ainger, Hartlepool Borough Council environmental projects officer, said:
“We invited allotment holders to ‘pledge some veg’ and the response was amazing.
“We would like to thank everyone who contributed for their invaluable support.
“It is great to know that the Big Christmas Dinner Challenge is really going to make a difference to a significant number of families.”
Empty boxes were donated by Fruit Fayre in Oxford Road and were filled with vegetables including potatoes, onions, carrots, leeks, beetroot, swede, sprouts, rosemary, cabbage and marrows before being delivered to the foodbank for distribution.
Each box also included an information pack with suggested recipes and advice from the Love Food Hate Waste campaign on how to make the most of the produce.
Al Wales, Hartlepool Foodbank co-ordinator, said:
“There was a fantastic response from allotment holders and we would like to pass on our heartfelt thanks. It was brilliant to be able to give out fresh vegetables.
“We gave some of the boxes to people who sought help directly from us and others were distributed amongst our partner charities.”
Allotment sites which contributed to the appeal were Nicholson Field, Thornhill, Throston, Chester Road, Briarfields, Burn Valley, Woodcroft, Summerhill, Haswell, Rossmere and Waverley Terrace.
Staff and volunteers at the Waverley Terrace Community Allotment, which offers opportunities to children and adults with physical and learning disabilities, and people with mental health problems, also helped to collect, sort and pack the donations.
Since January, Hartlepool Food Bank, part of the Trussell Trust foodbank network, has fed 4,357 people since it was started. This month alone it has supported 290 people, 89 of whom were children.
Source – Hartlepool Mail, 22 Dec 2014