Two neighbouring councils have committed tens of thousands of pounds to tackling a problem underpass which has seen hundreds of crime and anti-social behaviour incidents in the last five years.
Some £50,000 has been pledged to installing CCTV cameras at the M6 underpass in Moss Lane, linking Leyland with Clayton-Le-Woods in the Chorley borough.
It comes after it was reported in April that since 2014, more than 500 incidents have been recorded by police in Moss Lane, with 167 in the last year alone.
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In January, a man in the 50s was knock unconscious in the underpass, stamped on and left on the ground.
Now, South Ribble and Chorley councils have launched the new scheme as part of South Ribble’s Community Safety Partnership, which is being heard before the council’s scrutiny committee this Thursday (October 10).
Each council will contribute £25,000 to the scheme, with a further £10,000 committed by South Ribble to installing CCTV in Leyland town centre.
The underpass lines on the geographical edge of both council districts.
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South Ribble Coun Susan Jones, Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “It was agreed in July that South Ribble Borough Council and Chorley Borough Council would fund the installation of CCTV cameras at both sides of the underpass on Moss Lane, Leyland.
"The cameras will then be monitored at the Chorley Borough Council monitoring station.
"The decision to install the CCTV cameras was made following cross agency meetings arranged by myself and fellow Ward Councillor, Coun Ken Jones, as a response to the increase in anti-social behaviour in the area.
"A major aggravating factor in the anti-social behaviour experienced in the area was the overgrown foliage on either side of the underpass together with poor street lighting.
“The meetings involved South Ribble and Chorley councils, the Police, Lancashire Fire and Rescue, Lancashire County Council, representatives from St Catherine’s School and a representative from the office of Seema Kennedy MP.
“Both South Ribble and Chorley Councils have cleared the undergrowth and are awaiting improvements to street lighting and resurfacing.
“The installation of the new CCTV will cost in the region of £50,000 and costs will be shared equally by South Ribble and Chorley.
“St Catherine’s School and the Arch Diocese are also making a considerable investment in new fencing.
“Further CCTV installations in Leyland are being considered.”
Less than 18 months ago, a serious jewellery robbery took place in the underpass where a 28-year-old woman received stab threats after being approached by three men.
Coun Ken Jones, ward councillor for St. Ambrose, said: “This project has been challenging but with goodwill and cooperation amongst all the agencies involved I am really pleased we have a successful outcome in sight.”
Chorley Coun Alistair Bradley, Leader of Chorley Council, said: “We know the underpass is well used and there has been a concern over safety and anti social behaviour so we’ve been working with South Ribble Council, the police and other partners to look at ways of making it safer.
“We’ve agreed to install CCTV in the area and the cost will be split between ourselves and South Ribble.”