Church Street sends abusive and noisy neighbour packing

A so-called neighbour from hell has been booted out of her Church Street flat after her anti-social behaviour sparked 70 complaints in six months.

Patricia Connaughton, 23, of Stanfield House, Frampton Street, frequently held late-night parties and was generally a noisy neighbour.

When asked by residents to keep the noise down, she was abusive and threatened violence. She also threatened council staff and police.

There were also allegations of drug dealing and the handling of stolen goods at the property.

Sgt Ian Rowing, of Church Street safer neighbourhoods team, said: “She moved into the property in October 2010 and we started receiving complaints within a month.

“Initially, we tried to sort the problem out amicably. I went to see her and left a letter saying what the complaints were and suggesting she should consider adapting her behaviour and the behaviour of anyone else calling into the property.

“But the complaints continued and the council managed to obtain evidence against her.”

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The flat has been served with a premises closure order under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act. This closes the property for three months and prevents Miss Connaughton or anyone else from returning.

“It’s an excellent result which offers immediate respite for the residents from a problem that was really impacting on their lives and the peaceful enjoyment of their homes,” said Sgt Rowing.

“I hope this demonstrates to other people that coming forward and talking to us about problems such as this can really make a difference.”

Miss Connaughton could be fined or imprisoned if she returns to the flat.

The property has now been handed back to the council’s housing provider and Miss Connaughton is no longer eligible for council housing in the borough.

The successful closure order comes as police look to crack down on anti-social behaviour in the Church Street area.

Last month, a general dispersal area was put in place for six months. This allows police to disperse groups, force them to leave the area and ban them from returning for 24 hours.

The move followed an increase in reported incidents of anti-social behaviour since the start of the year.

n To report anti-social behaviour, call the police 24-hour non-emergency number on 0300 123 1212.