Walkers urged to join ‘army’ reporting anti-social behaviour in Norwich

Thorpe Hamlet councillor, Ben Price, and Louis Price, reporting fly tipping on the way to school. Pi

Thorpe Hamlet councillor, Ben Price, and Louis Price, reporting fly tipping on the way to school. Picture: Norwich Green Party - Credit: Archant

People in Norwich have been urged to join an army of community champions to report “one item” of anti-social behaviour (ASB) while on walks - including graffiti, dog fouling and fly tipping.

The campaign called One Report Walk encourages people to report the issues while on walks to work, the shops or on the school run.

They are being asked use their phones to take pictures of ASB and report it on Norwich City Council’s website.

The initiative has been launched by Ben Price, Green Party councillor for Thorpe Hamlet, in a bid to “stem the tide of this explosion” of ASB.

Since lockdown, Mr Price said he had noticed a “shocking proliferation” of graffiti along with fly tipping and dog mess.

He said: “When I see graffiti, I stop, take a picture and report it through the council’s website so the council’s contractors can come out and remove it very quickly.

“I have to say that I’m impressed with the speed at which the graffiti is cleaned up. These small things need to be nipped in the bud. It will make a massive difference if everyone reports just one thing when they see it.”

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Mr Price hopes to create an army of community champions who will each report on issues across their own routes in the city.

He said: “The longer problems are left before they are dealt with, the worse they get and the harder it is to deal with them, so more of the council’s limited resources are used up.”

Kevin Maguire, cabinet member for safe and sustainable city environment, said: “The amount of graffiti in the city can be linked to social issues and criminal activities and sometimes to national or even international campaigns.

“Graffiti is a criminal offence, which should be reported either to Norwich City Council or the police, depending on where it is. Norwich City Council removes graffiti on its own buildings and land, but any graffiti on private land and buildings needs to be reported to the police and is down to the owner to remove.

“We encourage people to report graffiti to us that is found on council property, public areas and highways. Where possible, we will remove offensive or hate-related graffiti within 24 hours and all other graffiti within 14 working days.”