Saltford is a beautiful village, particularly its riverside and conservation areas, which as a result are currently experiencing a high level of visitors both from the immediate area and further afield.
SPC thanks the numerous residents who have contacted SPC about concerns resulting from the ‘influx’ of people to these areas recently including anti-social behaviour, pavement parking & road access issues, littering etc. SPC Councillors sympathise with residents and the issues raised and met (remotely) to urgently discuss the matter on Tuesday 26th May.
SPC has now taken the following actions:
1) Contacted A&V police Keynsham Beat Team managers requesting increased regular police presence and patrols in Saltford, especially in the riverside and conservation areas. Police responded on Thursday 28th May confirming that they will step up patrols, and on Sunday 31 May closed the High St and The Shallows in response as well as patrolling with mounted police. Due to the effects of the police focus closing the roads and moving people on no formal actions were taken, as reported subsequently by the Beat Manager. The police have also worked with Avon Fire and Rescue to patrol the riverside area and educate the public on swimming and drinking. A statement was provided by Inspector Gavin Usher on 1st June, as follows: “The Keynsham Neighbourhood Team have reviewed the incidents which took place over the weekend and can see a marked increase in persons using the riverside locations in Saltford. The three further complaints from concerned residents evidence the problems being caused to the residents by the visitors’ behaviour. Officers attended and dealt with the traffic congestion and were supported by officers from the mounted section. Officers also attended to deal with the other reports of anti-social behaviour. As much as possible, my team is intent on preventing further difficulties for residents. To that end the team will maintain regular patrols in the village to monitor traffic and people, give advice and enforce breaches of the law. This coming and future weekends the Keynsham Neighbourhood Team will aim to staff the village with an officer throughout the working tour of duty, subject to other incidents as they arise. I hope this provides reassurance that we are aware of the issues and have a patrol plan in place increasing visibility in the area”.
2) Contacted Bath and North East Somerset Council cc-ing B&NES Ward Cllrs about the littering issues and requesting daily bin emptying / bin bag collection and litter picking. SPC have contacted them again on Sunday 31st May requested a response to our request. Immediate action was taken on Monday 1st June by Cllr Duncan Hounsell following a request from SPC to its B&NES Ward Cllrs. Now all Bath and North East Somerset Council Cabinet Members are aware of the situation. The following statement went public on 04.06.20 from the Group Manager of Environmental Services:
Following SPC’s request to B&NES Council for action and support during the ‘influx’, the following response has been received:
The Council’s Environmental Services team working with the Saltford Wombles and the clubs at the Saltord Rowing Centre are removing 20-30 bags of litter per day more, than normal. The Saltford Wombles and volunteers have been brilliant at helping the Council with the litter picking especially given the Covid-19 social distancing restrictions.
We are seeing a huge increase in litter in all of our parks as people are out enjoying the weather as the lockdown rules are eased, and Saltford has been particularly popular. Without the help of volunteers we could not clear all of this. We are deploying staff to priority locations throughout the district to respond to incidents as soon as we can but we do only have a finite resource.
We want visitors to our parks and green spaces to enjoy them safely and to follow social distancing rules. In addition please act respectfully and responsibly.
Most of our public toilets are all open as usual and have been throughout the pandemic, but unfortunately those at the Shallows suffered from a collapsed drain this weekend and may not now be available in the short term until this is resolved. Please be aware of this if you are planning to visit.
There is no excuse to leave a mess. Take all of your rubbish home.
3) Complaints from residents received prior to 1st June to SPC have been collated and sent to Jacob Rees-Mogg M.P. for his attention and action (these were anonymous unless otherwise requested). Should any resident wish to express their concerns directly to Mr Rees-Mogg please contact him directly at https://members.parliament.uk/member/4099/contact . SPC would like to thank the office of Jacob Rees-Mogg for obtaining the statement from Inspector Gavin Usher (above). SPC have contacted Mr Rees-Mogg stating that SPC would be grateful for any further updates and actions regarding this high profile situation in Saltford, which continues to cause distress and concern to many residents. The office of Jacob Rees-Mogg has stated on 2nd June that ‘Police presence has been increased, as verified by Inspector Usher. We are still receiving complaints from residents’ and that these are being passed to B&NES Council and the police for a response.
SPC reminds residents to contact the police if required (101 if urgent, 999 if an emergency, or else online at https://www.police.uk/…/contact-th…/report-a-crime-incident/). SPC also asks residents to continue to use the https://www.fixmystreet.com/ website to report excessive littering, overflowing bins and dog fouling.
Our thanks again to those residents counter-acting the current impact on these areas of the village, including the hard work of the Saltford Wombles and other local residents to keep our village beautiful for everyone to enjoy.
To those visiting Saltford’s beauty spots, please be aware that there are no public toilets available, and SPC requests that you take your litter home with you or place it in one of the many B&NES Council bins or gold bags available. Please only BBQ in areas set up (i.e. picnic tables with BBQ stands). SPC also requests that those who drive to the riverside and conservation areas park in designated parking areas, and not on pavements or along narrow sections of road, to ensure pedestrian safety and good emergency vehicle access. SPC wishes to remind people that these parts of Saltford are residential areas, with many people working from home, including those residing in boats in the marina areas
Useful contact information:
If you wish to report a possible crime, anti-social behaviour or dangerous parking, please contact the police directly. If urgent phone 101, and if an emergency call 999. You can also contact the Keynsham Beat Team at https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/your-area/keynsham/ (scroll to end for contact form).
For B&NES Council enquiries contact 01225 394041 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. B&NES Council are responsible for issues relating to highways (including some parking issues – see below), waste collections, recycling centres etc. For further information on whether B&NES Council or the police are responsible for specific parking issues please see page 3 of https://beta.bathnes.gov.uk/sites/default/files/2018-10/parking_responsibilities_guide_2013-compressed.pdf
SPC encourages people to report overflowing bins and excessive littering to B&NES Council using the https://www.fixmystreet.com/ website.
In the case of an emergency B&NES Council’s out-of-hours details can be found at https://www.bathnes.gov.uk/services/your-council-and-democracy/emergencies
Further information about Saltford Parish Council can be found at www.saltfordparishcouncil.gov.uk