Crackdown on yobs on Doncaster estate through new housing rules

The royal estate, Edlington, Doncaster

Tough new rules on landlords have been approved in the latest bid to crackdown on antisocial behaviour on a Doncaster estate.

Doncaster Council's cabinet has approved the creation of regulations designed to force landlords to help control nuisance tenants, using rules similar to those already put in place in Hexthorpe after concerns had been raised there.

The rules, called Edlington Selective Licensing Scheme, will affect the Royal estate, plus a number of the surrounding streets, such as Markham Road, Markham Square, Cross Street, North Street, Baines Avenue, Carr Road, Hazel Road and Auburn Road.

South Yorkshire Police is backing the scheme, the cabinet heard, which is being brought in after a programme of public consultation.

But both the Residential Landlords Association and the National Landlords Association opposed the plans, saying the authorities already had enough power to deal with antisocial behaviour.

Licensed landlords under the new scheme will have to 'take all reasonable and all practicable steps for preventing and dealing effectively with anti-social behaviour by persons occupying or visiting the house and these of premises for illegal purposes'.

One of the comments from the public during the consultation stated: "This is long overdue, every decent person from Edlington considers that the area in and around the royal estate is a no-go area from the evening time."

Official figures showed in 2016 there were 113 complaints of non-noise nuisance in Edlington, with 108 of those from within the Royal estate and its surrounding areas.

Approving the scheme, deputy mayor Coun Glynn Jones said: "I know from being the elected member for Hexthorpe it has had an effect on landlords there, and their duty to the community.

"There are still some landlords being brought to book but overall behaviour of tenants and landlords have improved.

"Some would say differently, such as those whose next door neighbours are involved in antisocial behaviour, but the statistics show an improvement and I expect this to pass on to Edlington"

Other cabinet members backed the proposal. Coun Joe Blackham said: "This will regulate the difficulties we've had in Edlington for a considerable period. I welcome the selective licencing scheme's introduction."

Coun Chris McGuinness added: "This will encourage landlords to get involved in their communities."

A public meeting in March heard people living on the Royal Estate claim menacing young gangs are running amok on off-road bikes taunting locals and threatening them with weapons.

Residents said an escalating crime spree had resulted in a spate of burglaries, smashed windows and arson attacks while drug dealing and threats of violence had become part of everyday life.

Police targeted the estate for action and made Edlington one of the first parts of Doncaster to have new style community policing.

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