Residents of ‘Britain’s roughest street’ say children are being stabbed and drug addicts everywhere
Residents say they live in fear on ‘Britain’s roughest street’, teeming with five-pound prostitutes, teenagers being stabbed and drug addicts ‘everywhere’. Slade Road in Stockland Green, Birmingham, is said to be a hotbed of violence and drugs, which has fallen into disrepair in recent years. Locals say they are too scared to go out after dark after numerous assaults, street robberies and drug dealings, even in broad daylight. People say that they are also approached by cheap sex workers who sell their trade on the street for a fiver. Parents are forced to drop off their children directly at the school gates and entrepreneurs are escorted to the post office for fear of being robbed for their earnings. Residents also say drunks and zombie addicts roam the streets all the time, and some are too scared to venture into the shops during the day. They say the problem has gotten worse over the past decade and police are rarely seen lining the street, which has been called ‘Britain’s toughest’. Gran-of-two Pam Round, 69, says she’s seen the street deteriorate in her seven years working in a public house at Stockland Green Methodist Church on Slade Road. She said: “I worked at the community cafe for about seven years and in that time the road has gotten progressively worse. “People tend to hang out on the street and sit in doorways and you get that nervous feeling when you walk there, and it feels like a really sad neighborhood. “I do feel safe during the day, but if I were to walk on it at night, I don’t think I would feel safe. “People hang around the shops and the post office and I know this makes people afraid to go out and do their shopping. “There are two schools in the area and I know that parents drop their kids off at the high school so they don’t become targets of drug trafficking. “It happens in broad daylight and parents are afraid their children will fall into it. “You don’t see the police here very often, which is worrying. “There are people coming to the community bar emotionally distressed by all the drugs and booze they’ve been using, and we don’t know who to call. “It can be quite distressing and we are not professionally trained to deal with it.” A woman who worked at a corner street shop who wished to remain anonymous said business was declining because of the street’s bad reputation. She said: “This problem has gained momentum over the last decade. “There are drunk people everywhere and people who are on drugs and they are also selling the drugs in broad daylight and something needs to be done. “Things are getting out of hand and people are afraid to come out, which has consequences for the companies. “People can’t go out to do their shopping for fear of being ambushed and unable to perform their daily tasks. “When they go to get money from the post office, they are afraid it will be taken away. “The situation is very bad. We have had to escort people to the post office in the past to get their money out so they don’t get attacked.” Another local man, who wishes to remain anonymous, added: “You have to have your wits about you here. “Kids stabbing each other, I heard about the £5 prostitutes and that it’s the roughest street in Britain, but that will be like a badge of honor for these idiots.” The police barely show their faces here too, you can’t walking down the street without being offered sex or drugs. “It’s like being in Amsterdam – but a million times darker. I like to think I can take care of myself, but even I don’t go out in the dark anymore.” As recently as January 19, a huge cannabis factory along Slade Road was busted by police, leading to the discovery of £200,000 worth of plants. Yazir Mehmood, owner of Yaz Barbers, said people smoking pot was a big problem on the street with the smell coming into his shop. The 38-year-old said: “I’ve owned the hairdressers for 10 years and in that time the road has only gotten worse. “There are so many HMOs (multi-occupancy homes) in the area and so every day they bring new people on the street. “Many released prisoners also live here.” On the street in daylight there are always a lot of drunk people and people who deal drugs. “People smoke weed outside my barbers all the time and the smell comes into the shop and it’s horrible. “I always leave at 7pm because I know after that I don’t feel safe on the streets because this is a time when more people were drinking and using drugs. Pet shop owner Monica Phillips, 72, has run Birmingham Reptiles on Slade Road for 26 years and believes the problem lies with the people in the HMOs. The mother of four said: “Drugs, drunks and prostitution, it all happens in a few months” ago our house was burgled and luckily we have cameras on cameras, but the police didn’t want to hear about it. “Last night we had fly-tipping at the back of our store and we can’t go into the alley at the moment so that’s why the problem is definitely with the HMOs and all the new faces coming through this part of Birmingham because of them. “You are definitely very wary when you walk down the street. We get a lot of the customers say they are scared when they visit the store. “There have been stabbings and robberies on this road in recent years. And with times changing, I think you get this everywhere, but it’s definitely worse on Slade Road.