CONCERNED residents living close to Bournemouth town centre have called for tougher action to combat antisocial behaviour on their streets.

The West Hill Community group, which was formed to champion the West Hill area of Bournemouth, says a number of issues continue to blight the area.

These include vandalism, public drunkenness, drugs use, graffiti, unswept roads, smashed bottles littering the pavements and flytipping.

Bournemouth Echo:

West Hill Community chairman Simon Grimston told the Daily Echo: "West Hill is a predominantly pleasant area, but there is an element – for whatever reason – who cause problems for residents and businesses.

"Some of the local shopkeepers have a tough time of it.

"We are looking at making this area better for residents and promoting it for businesses as well."

Bournemouth Echo:

Mr Grimston is calling for new community schemes to promote the district, and says the residents' group already has backing from local businesses.

BCP Council, which told the Echo they will continue to work with the residents' group, says a 'multi-agency' West Hill project has been in operation at West Hill since October last year.

This project, says the council, looks to address housing standards, licensing concerns, environmental issues and antisocial behaviour in the area.

Bournemouth Echo:

BCP targeted enforcement manager Sophie Ricketts said: "At BCP Council we work in partnership on the West Hill project with Dorset Police, immigration service, Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service and Citizens Advice.

"We are committed to the improvement of the local area and promotion of tenant rights, and will continue to support ongoing engagement with the resident group to discuss their concerns."

Since the project began 131 properties have been inspected for housing standards compliance, and 111 enforcement notices have been served on landlords.

Bournemouth Echo:

In November, last year, there was also an environmental clean of St Michael's Road which dealt with flytipping, clearance of gullies, refreshing of road markings, graffiti removal and street cleansing.

The next meeting of the West Hill Community group, which is open to local residents, is scheduled for The Connaught Hotel, West Hill Road, at 7pm, Tuesday, June 25.