Private security hired to patrol Woodford Green estate to deter drug dealers
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Residents of a Woodford Green estate have reportedly hired private security staff to patrol the area, such are their concerns over drug dealing.
Guards will tour around Tamar Square, off Ashdon Close, at random times, in an attempt to stop youths selling drugs and engaging in anti-social behaviour.
“They’ve got a look out and they run off if the police or Neighbourhood Watch come,” explained Cllr Linda Huggett (Con, Monkhams).
“So now the residents have got their own private security to patrol around the area.”
The estate’s guards will be in plain clothes, so as not to attract attention, and they will also patrol at irregular times, to try and catch the youths out.
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The Conservative councillor explained she thought the high visibility vests of Neighbourhood Watch volunteers had alerted the drug dealers, allowing them to escape.
Cllr Huggett, who has been liaising with the residents, said: “They’re hoping the security will deter the dealers from coming to the estate.”
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But the private bouncers won’t themselves be doing any interrogating Cllr Huggett added.
“If they catch them they will call the police,” she said.
While there have been several Woodford Green estates which have had issues with anti-social behaviour – Broomhill Court and the Orchard Estate – this is thought to be the first time residents have taken matters into their own hands.
“I’m not in favour,” commented Mark Glazer, head of the borough’s Neighbourhood Watch.
“I know they did it in Loxford a few years ago, but personally I don’t like the idea of putting residents at risk.”
Redbridge Police have been contacted for comment.