News | Fiery furniture ignites anger

A fire in Hyde Park has left students feeling unsafe in their homes.

Muzammil Ali, a PHd student in Chemical Engineering, was in a neighbouring house when a fire was started on a sofa outdoors in an alleyway: “When I woke up in the morning and saw this, it did make me feel unsafe. I just moved in this month.”

Students on the Hyde Park street said they felt unsafe as the fire came after a series of incidents of anti-social behaviour in the area.

Ali said that he wasn’t aware when he moved in about the previ- ous incidents of anti-social behaviour in the area, which has included youths setting off fireworks in the street.

A second year English Literature student who has lived on the street

for two years said: “It’s a regular occurrence. We’ve called the police several times and they’ve not been a massive help. They’ve always missed the anti-social behaviour which is a bit rubbish.”

A spokesperson from the West Yorkshire Police said: “Clearly anti- social behaviour remains a top priority for local neighbourhood policing team officers who work closely with the Leeds City Council and other partner agencies to address issues.”

They added: “That said, we wouldn’t consider these two incidents as a sustained pattern of anti- social behaviour without further specific details of other incidents,” going on to say: “I’d be very surprised if the residents have not been receiving suitable attention from the Neighbourhood Policing Team if they have been reporting a string of incidents.”

Sean Hayes

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