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Labour hold control of Crawley

With a win of 19 over the Conservatives 17 seats Labour have held control of the town.

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After a long day of counts and recounts the final results have come in with both Labour and Conservatives losing and gaining seats in several wards.

Overall though Labour has held control but there have been some shocks.

In particular the current Mayor, Carlos Castro lost his seat in Tilgate to Conservative Charles Petts.

The elected were:

Bewbush & North Broadfield

Marion Ayling – Labour

Rory Fiveash – Labour

Michael Jones – Labour

Broadfield

Ian Irvine – Labour

Tim Lunnon – Labour

Tahira Rana – Labour

Furnace Green

Duncan Crow – Conservative

Carol Eade – Conservative

Gossops Green

Liam Ascough – Conservative

Chris Mullins – Labour

Ifield

Geraint Thomas – Labour

Peter Smith – Labour

Jilly Hart – Labour

Langley Green & Tushmore

Shahzad Malik – Labour

Brenda Smith – Labour

Tom McAleney – Labour

Maidenbower

Kim Jaggard – Conservative

Jennifer Millar-Smith – Conservative

Duncan Peck – Conservative

Northgate & West Green

Peter Lamb – Labour

Gurinder Jhans – Labour

Karen Sudan – Labour

Pound Hill North & Forge Wood

Tina Belben – Conservative

Richard Burrett – Conservative

Kevan McCarthy – Conservative

Pound Hill South & Worth

Andrew Belben – Conservative

Bob Lanzer – Conservative

Alison Pendlington – Conservative

Southgate

Mike Pickett – Labour

Morgan Flack – Labour

Rajesh Sharma – Labour

Three Bridges

Bob Burgess – Conservative

Brenda Burgess – Conservative

Jonathan Purdy – Conservative

Tilgate

Francis Guidera – Conservative

Charles Petts – Conservative

Coronavirus

Reports of anti-social behaviour across Crawley increase by as much as 780% during lockdown

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At first glance it is an alarming and worrying increase. The figures from Police.uk show how as the town entered lockdown at the end of March there was a huge increase in reports of anti-social behaviour through the following month of April.

Ifield had the largest increase in reports for anti-social behaviour with a huge rise of 780% in April 2020.

The figure for Ifield ward may be shocking but all other wards across the town have also seen a dramatic rise as well.

The following shows the percentage increase in reports of anti-social behaviour across Crawley for the first month of lockdown (April 2020).

Bewbush reported a 444%.

Pound Hill – 330% increase.

Northgate – 212% increase.

Broadfield – 150% increase.

Langley Green – 135% increase.

Southgate – 135% increase.

Tilgate – 118% increase.

Three Bridges – 100% increase.

Maidenbower reported – 81% increase.

So what has caused the sudden increase? Has the town suddenly become more ‘anti-social’?

Actually no, the answer has everything to do with the very lockdown itself and not what you would normally consider a ‘traditional anti-social behaviour’.

As the new rules were laid out then so most people acted correctly and obeyed them. But at the same time some didn’t and these people ended up getting reported by others.

Now a decision had to be made of how a report into a disobeyance of lockdown rules would be classed and in the end they were put under anti-social behavour.

Whether it was a report of a party happening in someones garden, through to groups of youths congregating on street corners, all these reports got filed under anti-social behaviour and saw the dramatic rise in figures.

One thing these figures have shown, however, is a glimpse into which wards were possibly obeying the rules more than others, OR conversely which ward residents were reporting more frequently on others.

But despite the dramatic rise Ifield did not actually have the highest number of anti-social reports in April 2020 across Crawley. Closer analysis of the figures shows that it was in-fact Broadfield that had the most reports.

Broadfield (which had a 150% rise) had 75 reports compared to Ifield’s 44 in April 2020 with Pound Hill (330% increase) receiving the second highest number of 56.

Looking at Ifields 780% rise, the actual number of anti-social reports in March 202 was only 5, while in April 2020 it was 44.

Our findings are supported by the response from Sussex Police over the figures.

District Commander for Crawley & Mid Sussex Chief Inspector Shane Baker said:

“Most crime types dropped sharply during the early stages of lockdown in April, however the suggested statistics does not reflect a true increase in reports of anti-social behaviour.

“After government restrictions were put in place to slow the spread of Covid-19, police received a high volume of reports of gatherings and Covid-19 related calls, these were recorded under anti-social behaviour and therefore it is not an increase in traditional ASB.

“We continue to monitor the situation closely and are committed to keeping our local communities safe and pleasant places to live, however overall crime is still well below this time last year.

Data for May 2020 has not yet been released, but it will be fascinating to see just how the data compares to the first month of lockdown and whether it raised more concerns of ‘anti-social behaviour’ or fewer.

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