A Doncaster MP has urged residents in an area blighted by anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping to unite to help address community tensions.
Doncaster Central MP Rosie Winterton visited Hexthorpe on Friday to talk to residents about their concerns.
But people living there said the MP had not seen a true reflection of how bad the situation was, as a big ‘clean-up’ operation had taken place prior to her visit.
Tensions are still running high in the village after residents clashed with Roma migrants who have moved into the area, prompting a march by the English Defence League last summer.
And it comes after a flare-up in community tensions last summer led to two men being stabbed following a fight between groups of Poles and Slovaks, as well as continuing problems with anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping that have led to Doncaster Council being called in for a ‘deep-clean’ once a fortnight.
Ena Chadwick, who has lived in Hexthorpe all her 67 years, said yesterday: “It’s a lot better today than usual. They’ve had a clean up so it’s no way near as bad.
“Usually it’s awful. It’s really terrible to see how things have changed. This used to be a lovely place to live.
“Now the houses are scruffy and there’s rubbish everywhere – my house is worth £20,000 less now.
“People say I should move away, but I’ve lived here all my life so why should I?”
Ms Winterton conducted a three-hour walk around Hexthorpe.
She was also due to have a meeting with residents last night to help find solutions to some of the problems.
Speaking in Hexthorpe, Ms Winterton said residents had real concerns.
She said she had spoken to people from all the different communities in a bid to try to find solutions to some of the issues.
Ms Winterton said: “Action has already been taken in terms of what the council has tried to do and working with the police and introducing the landlord licensing system.
“I can’t make huge promises that everything will be fine in three weeks’ time.
“However, what I can say is I will do everything I can to assist people to work together to find solutions to some of the problems that are arising.
“But it means everyone in the community does have to pull together and we have to build on the work done so far and look to the future and say what are the long-lasting solutions we need.”