Residents in killer's street honoured

RESIDENTS who united in the wake of the Suffolk murders have won a national award for revitalising their community.

John Howard

RESIDENTS who united in the wake of the Suffolk murders have won a national award for revitalising their community.

Steve Wright lived in London Road, Ipswich, at the time of his killing spree in late 2006, and people in the road were left stunned as the horrific story unfolded.

But the efforts made by the London Road Neighbourhood Watch Group to rebuild community spirit in the wake of the case have now been recognised.

It has just been named the neighbourhoodwatch.net group of the month winners.

Ron Alder, group chairman, now proudly describes the street where he lives as a peaceful, quiet area.

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Mr Alder, 74, said the organisation was determined to rid their road of its unwelcome reputation as a red light district.

They have also been translating their newsletter, produced several times a year, into Polish and Portuguese to build bridges with all local residents, as well as organising quiz nights and social events.

Mr Alder said: “We are trying to involve everyone, the street has really been born again. At the time we were snowed under with TV cameras everywhere.

“Once people realised that we were not nosy neighbours it worked very well and people speak to each other in the street now.”

The residents lobbied the council to install CCTV cameras to deter kerb crawlers and prostitution in the area has been tackled.

Mr Alder said: “London Road is now almost a haven of peace and quiet. You don't see any prostitutes round here any more and the kerb crawlers have all been arrested.”

Neighbourhoodwatch.net manager Mick Kelly said: “We salute the residents of London Road for the way in which they have coped with the appalling events of the past year or more.

“Ron Alder and his neighbours are a shining example of what can be done to re-build community spirit and bring normality back to an area once blighted by vice crime.”

As award winners the organisation receives a framed certificate and personal document shredders worth £170.

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