Operation will help clean up community

Organisations are coming together to help make sure an area of Longbenton is safe and spotless.

Operation Hotspot – which starts on Monday, June 16 – will tackle fly-tipping, anti-social behaviour, home fire safety and promote North Tyneside Council’s new ‘No Messing’ campaign targeting irresponsible dog owners over the week.

Both Northumbria Police and Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service are backing the campaign, along with ten other organisations.

Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “It’s wonderful that so many organisations are willing to give up their time to support this fantastic initiative.

“There’s loads going on and I would encourage people to come along to lend a hand, get some advice or join in with the number of free activities.”

The event begins at Balliol Youth and Community Centre, Chesters Avenue, from 11am to 3pm, where details will be provided on what’s on during the week.

One of the stalls will support of the council’s campaign. As part of it, the Dogs Trust will be offering free dog micro-chipping and pet health advice and in return, owners will be asked to join in a litter pick.

And as well as the range of stands providing residents with advice on a number of issues, Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service will there to arrange home fire safety checks.

District Manager for North Tyneside, Phil Clark said: “We’re delighted to have been a partner from the start of Operation Hotspot and it’s great to see its success growing. I would like to encourage local people to take part.

“We’ll be there to provide advice and information about how you can stay safe from fire. We will also be offering free home safety checks and fitting free smoke alarms, if required, to help local residents protect their homes, themselves and their loved ones.

“Preventing fires from happening in the first place is a key priority for our service and we hope to see as many people as possible at these events.”

On Tuesday, June 17, any residents affected by anti-social behaviour are invited to drop by a council and Northumbria Police-run event at the Oxford Centre, West Farm Avenue, between 10am and 2pm.

Neighbourhood Inspector Ray Smith added: “This is an excellent example of how working together with our partners we are able to tackle issues concerning the community.

“It is great that we can bring everyone together to play our part in keeping the area a safe and pleasant place to live.

“By speaking to our residents and getting everyone of all ages to engage with us, we are able to establish what issues are concerning the community and what we can do together with our partners to tackle these matters.”

Free five-aside football sessions and nail art will be provided by Wallsend Boys Club on Tuesday and Thursday at the Oxford Centre, West Farm Avenue, from 6pm to 8pm.

Community-spirited residents, voluntary organisations and businesses are also invited to lend a hand with a council-led clean-up at 11am on Monday, June 16, meeting at Baliol Youth and Community Centre.

Other organisations providing support for Operation Hotspot include TyneMet College, RSPCA, The Prince’s Trust, Justice Prince, Freeman Clinics, Balliol Youth and Community Centre and Victim Support.